Trama Textiles is an association of 17 different community weaving cooperatives in the western highlands of Guatemala. It is 100% worker-owned by more than 400 indigenous female backstrap loom weavers.
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Additional Info about Us
We have 3 permanent staff. Our Spanish-speaking President & Vice-President are voted in by the 400 members of our cooperative. They live on-site in Quetzaltenango with their families. These women act as the direct contacts to the Spanish-speaking representatives in the 17 communities that we work with.
We also have an English-Speaking coordinator who manages our team of international volunteers and liaises with our international wholesale an custom-order clients.
The organization is completely democratic, managed by a committee of elected representatives from each cooperative. The representatives are chosen based primarily on their Spanish literacy skills, ensuring that all groups can communicate regardless of the indigenous language spoken. Representatives coordinate the distribution of work and resources across the cooperatives, ensuring each weaver has the upfront capital needed to purchase thread. The association also offers workshops to its members on new and interesting ways to make crafts more marketable while staying true to traditional methods.
Members of Trama Textiles can sell their products directly to the association for resale in Trama Textiles’ Antigua and Quetzaltenango stores or to fill large international orders. Members are paid a fair trade wage set by the group of representatives. The wage enables weavers to live with dignity and support their families. Best of all, the retail profits offset the association’s administrative and promotional costs, so there is no cost to members.