Throughout the month of May all profits from the sale of the Lupita clutch will be donated directly to the weaver for which this bag is named, who is valiantly fighting against breast cancer.
Lupita has been a part of Manos Zapotecas from the very beginning. She is a talented weaver and one of the few artisans in Teotitlan del Valle who still works with natural dyes. A single mother to three boys, her life has known adversity but she has never let it defeat her cheerful nature or inner strength. It is this optimistic attitude, as well as love for her family, that will make all the difference in helping her conquer the illness that has stolen her health for the time being.
She began to learn to weave at the age of 8 when her mother passed away, preparing the yarn for her father to weave. He would take her out into the hills surrounding the town of Teotitlán del Valle when collecting the plants and bugs he used to dye the yarn and in this way she learned the ancient knowledge of natural dyes.
Lupita later married and had three boys, who are her pride and joy. They are polite, kind and hard-working boys, who have grown up learning the knowledge of dying and weaving, as well as how to use computers. One is even helping his mother write a book about her life, which speaks as much to his dedication to her as it does to her ambition.
Lupita is a very forthright woman and will tell you that her husband drank himself to death. She doesn’t delve into that part of her life though, and focuses largely on her growth since his passing when she regained control of her household and returned to weaving, a craft that she had long put aside.
Lupita became involved in the microfinance program, Fundacion En Via, in order to grow her weaving business. Through that organization she met Shelley, the founder of Manos Zapotecas, who was teaching business classes and when Shelley began MZ she invited Lupita to be a part of it. Her clutch-sized bags became very popular, and thus the Lupita Clutch was named for her.
About 6 month ago Lupita was diagnosed with breast cancer. What has followed has been surgery, chemotherapy, and she is currently undergoing radiation. With the bulk of her treatment behind her she is regaining energy, color, and her hair, which was a pair of lustrous black braids that trailed down her back.
While the public health care system is covering the bulk of the medical costs, there are huge expenses, such as transportation, food and education for her sons, made more difficult by that fact that she has been unable to work.
We want to help Lupita cover some of these basic living expenses until she regains her health enough to continue working, which she very much is looking forward to doing. Her eyes twinkle as she animatedly discusses a new, finer wool that she wants to use to make laptop cases.
Thank you for considering purchasing a Lupita clutch in month of May, when all profits will be given to her directly.