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Visit the "Mercado", Guatemalan Market, and get your favorite Doll some fun baskets and other useful things made out of cloth and natural materials. 

 

 


"Canastas" and "Canastos" Baskets to Store and Carry Things ---                    Click on Pictures for more detail
 
     


Baskets of all shapes and sizes are necessary to the daily life of  Mayans and ladinos alike in Guatemala. "Keen interest, knowledge, and great care are exercised in acquiring any basket---a person does not shop casually for such a purchase. Baskets commonly used come in families; canastas should not be confused with canastos, though only a handle stands between them.  The feminine variety (canastas) boast a handle, large or small, while the masculine counterpart (canastos) has not handle and is always more or less shallow." Some are made of woody vines, others of wicker or what ever other fiber material is available to the community (Osborn,1965).  You can find them in the Antigua market and other large markets, coming in from neighboring villages and regional basket-making centers. 

What can you  and your doll use a basket for?   I bet you can think of lots of things!!!
 

 

 Canasta, Latino market basket -  Are you heading to the market?  You will need a beautiful hand-crafted basket to carry all you might buy.  The baskets are about 2.5 inches tall - 5" with handle - and have a 4.4 inch rim.
 
$6.00


DA-BA-BL-m*
 
 

 Canasta, Small Latino market basket -  These smaller handled baskets look like "Easter Baskets". They are colorful, but not quite as well made as the Latino market above.  The baskets are about  1.5 inches tall - 3.5" with handle - and are about 2.5 inch across the rim) 
$3.50


DA-BA-BL-s*
  Canastos  ---  Mayan Market Baskets and other baskets without handles
 

Mayan Market Basket  

solola06.jpg (11821 bytes)



"Canasto" or Mayan Market Basket with "Tzute" (Carrying Cloth or Doll Table Cloth) --- There are so many things you can do with this "tzute" or cloth.    From San Antonio Aguas Caliente Guatemala this colorful cloth is approximately 12 x 15". 

$7.50

 


You can use the "tzute" to cover your market basket or put it on your kitchen table as a table cloth.

DA-BA-BM-TZ*
 

basket, tamale.JPG (17127 bytes)

Basket for tortillas - This basket is perfect for your dolls corn tortillas, one of the standard dishes in Guatemala. They are about 1" tall and have a 3" diameter
$1.00

basket, tamale with J (DA-H-B).JPG (18683 bytes)
DA-BA-BT* 
 
To compare sizes (market basket on left, small tortilla basket on right)
 

Small Tortilla Baskets with Tzute. -
The cloth is about 6" x 7" and the tortilla basket is about 1" tall and 3" diameter.
$4.00



DA-BA-BT-TZ-c* 
 
 

Small Tortilla Baskets with Tzute. -
The cloth is about 6" x 7" and the tortilla basket is about 1" tall and 3" diameter.
$4.00

r


DA-BA-BT-TZ-r* 
 

Rectangular Basket .
About 4" long, 3" wide and 1" tall.
$2.50

 DA-BA-BR-s
 

Covered basket -
This covered storage basket is about 3" high by 3" diameter.  Its a great place for storing friendship bracelets and other special things.
$3.00


 
DA-BA-BC-s* 

Sweet Grass Baskets
 
       

Sweet Grass Basket -  Colorful and great for putting your special treasures in.  You can hang them from the rafters (or a Christmas tree) with the string that holds their lid on. These covered storage baskets are about 3" high by 2.5" diameter. Some still have a sweet smell of the grasses they are made from in the Solola area of Guatemala.
$5.00


DA-BA-SG-m*

 

 Smaller Sweet Grass Basket - These covered storage baskets are about " high by 2" diameter and have a sweet smell. From Solola area.
$4.00


DA-BA-SG-s*

"Calabazas" (Gourds) ---  So many sizes. So many thing to use them for
 
 

Calabazas or Gourds come in many shapes and sizes and can be used for so many purposes.

Traditionally Mayans used a large gourd to store water.  My friends say water has a special taste when its stored in a gourd.
Cut a gourd in half and you have a handy bowl.
Choose gourd of another size and shape and you have a "Jicaras" or drinking cup.
Etch decorations on the cup, make a rush holder and you have a ceremonial cup for drinking the traditional warm corn drink called "Atol"
.  
 

"Jicaras" (Cup) and Rush Holder --- Drinking cup used to drink  "Atol " at a "fiesta" (holiday or party) with rush cup holder made by Mila.

$9.00


Item:    DA-BA-GD-RH*
 

 

 

"Jicaras" (only) --- Drinking cup used to drink
"Atol
"at a "fiesta" (holiday or party).

$6.00
 


Item:    DA-BA-GD*
 

Gourd Water Storage Container and Rush holder  ---   Not all water containers are made of plastic.  This traditional Mayan water holder is made of a gourd and sits on a woven rush holder.  Doll sized, the shapes are variable (around 5" tall and 2.5" diameter).
$7.50
 

Item:    DA-BA-GW-RH*
 

 

Gourd Water Storage Container  (only)  --- 
$5.00

 


Item:    DA-BA-GW*
 

gourd bowl.JPG (16721 bytes)

Gourd bowl - These half gourds are often  used for food and storage bowls. These are doll-sized
( approx. 2" diameter)
$1.50

sold out

Item:    DA-BA-GB-s*


Mats, Fans and other things made from Rushes and Reeds
 
 

s

 

Fan for cooking fire - many Mayan families cook over an open fire or grill.  They use these fans called "sopladores" to get the fires going and to fan the embers.  The fans are made of a coarse soft fiber made from the heart of a rush called "cibaque" and said to be best cut when the moon is full4. This is a small "doll-sized" fan approx. 4" tall and 3" wide.
$2.00

fan for fire.JPG (15941 bytes)  

Item:    DA-BA-F*
 

Small Rush Carrying Basket - About 1.5" tall (3" with handle), 1.5" wide and 1" deep, these small carrying baskets are made of rush.
$1.50

DA-BA-SB-s 
 

   


$3.00

Item:    DA-BA-RH*
 




 

"Petates"  Hand Woven Floor Mats  -
Mats are one of the oldest forms of weaving and they continue to serve a multiple of purposes in traditional Mayan homes. Petates are made from reeds and rushes such as those seen along San Juan La Lagunaís shoreline (pictured above.)

 Do you need a mat to sit on while you weave or eat tamales or take a siesta (nap)? How about a quick wall or door for privacy? Maybe a clean place to sort the corn seeds for planting next season?   To the right, you can see how these small petates could be used as a floor mat under your dollís table.

Price:  $5.00
 


Used as floor mat

Item:    DA-BA-M-s*
 
Straw Hats Made from Palm Leaves

 
 

Straw" Hat  ---
While we call these hats "straw hats" they are  usually made of "palma" (palm).

It takes many hours to braid the leaves into strands that are sewn into a hat.

Mayan men and women wear straw hats  in Todo Santos and several other villages.  In Most villages only the men wear straw hats either in village specific styles or  general Ladino styles.(Osborne, 1935)


"Hatmakers still sew these tradtional hats by machine or hand. Men need these hats for shade and protection from the sun and rain" (Anderson, 2011)


 

 Straw hats imitating the Mexican "sombreros" as well as large sun hats are made for Ladinos and tourists.   This straw hat is great for keeping the sun off your dolls face.

A colorful sash can make a  it very stylish.
$7.50


DA-H-S*

Bags and much more from Maguey
 
 

Maguey
In Guatemala there are more than 17 species of species of the Agave plant family that are used to make rope and many other useful things. You can see the plants next to corn fields and coffee plantations.  Before coffee maguey was one of the primary crops that covered the Mayan Highland hills. Mayans used the plant for food and drink, paper, and its fibers for cordage, nets,  bags, baskets mats and even made clothing and sandals from it for centuries (Rousso, 2010).


Pictures of some maguey products I found in the Antigua city market in 2012. Included (from left to right) is a fine soft thread-like material, various sizes of cording and rope, a bag, and mat.  Maguey is an American Indian name for the plant that is also known as henequen, sisal and has a variety of other names in individual Mayan languages. In Todo Santos (Mam) it's called Ch'ech'.
Today Maguey is a rarer plant in the landscape with an occasional plant found next to a cornfield or a farmstead.  Other crops have replaced Maguey on the land and plastic and synthetic fibers have replaced the material for many products in the market.  Processing the Maguey plant into fibers is a time consuming and arduous task.  Sadly, weaving the natural fiber into products requires skills and knowledge that many people have lost.
       
       

bb0.JPG (30267 bytes)

Red or Rope Bag / Cargo Net - 
Made from Maguey (Agave) rope (lazo)  Mayans  use these bags  to carry bundles to market. Men use the bags with tumplines (mecapals) to carry heavy loads. I have also seen the bags in the market keeping a couple chickens contained in a large market basket.


$3.00

sold out

 

DA-BA-RB*
 
bag, flat market_23.JPG (23957 bytes)
 
bags, straw shoulder 2_29.JPG (29010 bytes)  basket, shoulder.JPG (12503 bytes)  
 

 

 


Beautiful drawing in this Coloring Book by Marilyn Anderson

Maya Arts and Crafts of Guatemala:  Artes & Artesanias Mayas de Guatemala
Coloring Book by  Marilyn Anderson

Interested in learning how these baskets and other Mayan arts and crafts are made?  How about learning a bit of Spanish too?  Fun coloring book in English and Spanish to explore and great for school projects.
$6.00

 








 

 

Set of Baskets and Gourds   
Set A  - Includes:
  • Covered Basket

  •  Rectangular Basket

  • Gourd Water Storage & Rush Holder

  • Small Gourd Bowl

$12.00

 

 
 

Small Wall HangingThis doll hanging says "Recuerdo de Guatemala".  Do you know how to translate this?  Its a good way to remember your visit to Guatemala.
(weaving approximately 4.5" x 6").  Your hanging will be one of the bright colors shown in the picture on left.

5.00

  Fun Necklaces and Shoes for Your Doll

 

Books on Mayan Baskets and related Crafts:  For Children:

  • Marilyn Anderson, Artes y Artesanias Maya de Guatemala: Maya Arts and Crafts of Guatemala, Yatut Ix Malin, Rochester, NY, 2011 (4th printing)

Books on Mayan Baskets and related Crafts:  References:

  1. Marilyn Anderson, Artes y Artesanias Maya de Guatemala: Maya Arts and Crafts of Guatemala, Yatut Ix Mali n, Rochester, NY, 2011 (4th printing)
     

  2. Jose Balvino Camposeco M. An Ch'ech, sajchi' o Ki el Maguey ysus usos en Guatemala, Ediciones Yax Te', 1994
     

  3. Rainer y Rosanna Hostnig, Luis Vasquez V., Etnobotanica Mam: Parte 1, La cultura agricola y material del pueblo mam de Quetzaltenango y su relacion con el mundovegetal, Parte II, Enciciopedia botanica mam. OTZ, Proyecto Educacion Maya Bilingue Intercultural, Quetzaltenango-Guatemala,  1998
     

  4. Lilly de Jongh Osborn, Indian Crafts of Guatemala and El Salvado, University of Oklahoma Press, 1965
     

  5. Pedro J. Lemos, Guatemala Art Crafts, The Davis Press, Worcester, Massachusetts, 1941.
     

  6. Kathryn Rousso, Maguey Journey: Discovering Textiles in Guatemala, 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

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