Threads of Peru Blog

Product Feature: the Manta (an Andean blanket)

Product Feature: the Manta (an Andean blanket)

Called lliqlla (pronounced l-yick-lya) in Quechua, and manta in Spanish, this is a special piece of Andean clothing.  The manta is a medium-sized square textile composed of two pieces of fabric, each woven on the backstrap loom. The two halves are joined together by a central seam, but unlike the poncho, the entire length is sewn. These central seams are often very decorative, featuring such stitched designs as zig zags, triangles or starbursts.

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#makeyourstatement

#makeyourstatement

You may have wondered about our hashtag #makeyourstatement.

Threads of Peru provide opportunities to #makeyourstatement, whether it’s in your fashion choices or in daily life.

Our handcrafted pieces are made for a lifetime; each item is unique, handmade by an indigenous artisan who uses techniques passed down through the generations.  These pieces transcend seasons or fashions, and with their bold, tribal colors make it easy to #makeyourstatement 

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Product Feature: The Andean Chullo

Product Feature: The Andean Chullo

The OCONGATE and PITUKISKA hats have a long history in the Andes, and provide a direct link from past to present. The Andean chullo is an often elaborately decorated, usually colourful winter hat knitted using five very fine needles. Knitting was introduced in Peru during Colonial times, but it has reached an unparalleled degree of artistry in the Andes, becoming the subject of many academic writings. While weaving is largely done by women, in many communities it is often the men who knit.

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How We Met: Pitukiska

How We Met: Pitukiska

Pitukiska is another of the communities that I first connected with as a volunteer for Q’ente. I remember the first time I travelled to Pitukiska, in 2010. Back then, the routine was to drive from Cusco to Calca – about an hour by public transit – and stay overnight in that town. Calca is probably my favourite town in the Sacred Valley: a little off the beaten track, its adjoining plazas in the heart of town are a jewel to behold with its lush palm trees and impressive colonial era church, all embraced by the rolling mountain peaks that rise up on either side of the Valley.

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Featuring the Peruvian Alpaca Poncho

Featuring the Peruvian Alpaca Poncho

Threads of Peru’s line of alpaca ponchos, part of our Quechua Collection are rooted in Andean culture and steeped in history. The Andean poncho is a traditional item of Andean dress that may date back to some of the earliest pre-Incan cultures. The poncho is composed of two rectangular pieces of fabric woven on the backstrap loom, each piece the width of the weaver’s body. The two pieces are subsequently sewn together, leaving an opening in the middle of the seam for the head to pass through. When worn, the poncho covers most of the upper body, protecting one from the cold, while still allowing free movement of the hands and arms.

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How We Met: Upis Weavers

In late 2012, I was on the lookout for another weaving association to add to our growing network. On a routine trip out to Ollantaytambo on public transit, I happened to notice a sign advertising an upcoming artisan fair that would be held just outside Chinchero. "Amazing!," I thought. "Perfect place to meet some new weavers."

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