The MZ Fall 2014 Collection is filled with the beautiful Zapotec designs as one can expect but for this seasons we urged the weavers to take a step back from their loom and re-imagine their traditional designs. They deconstructed, expanded, minimized, moved and distorted typical elements found in Zapotec designs, giving us a whole new style to showcase this fall.
While diverting from tradition is challenging, particularly for a community so steeped in tradition and in touch with their ancestral heritage, the weavers had a lot of fun experimenting with new designs.
With regard to history, experimenting with designs is nothing new in Teotitlan, where weaving dates back to 500 BC. It is said that the Zapotecs would pay their financial tribute to the Aztecs in weaving. With the arrival of the Spanish, the Zapotecs switched to foot pedal looms and wool. Then with the opening of the Pan American Highway and increased tourism in the 40s and 50s, Teotitlan was opened up to other global influences. Over the years weavers have been introduced to the works of Picasso, Diego Rivera, Matisse, Miro, and even designs from other indigenous groups like the Navajos.
So, this season we decided to once again explore new places to draw inspiration; from earrings and outfits from the fall runway as well as ancient weavings and baskets. We played with negative spaces and experimented with new colors: wine, deep emerald, black, crimson red, navy, camel, teal, toffee and ivory.
Marcos and Rosalia embraced a modern twist on their designs. While other weavers like Malena enjoyed capturing sections of traditional patterns and expanding them. In one of Josefina’s designs she took a very elegant approach to a traditional Zapotec diamond by rounding out the corners.
The process has been exciting in fun for both the weavers and us, and the results are a collection of bags unlike anything we’ve put together before. We hope you like it!