On the shores of Lake Atitlan, the rich weaving tradition is passed down through generations. Following this pattern, Elena learned to weave from her mother when she was 9-years-old. When she was married, Elena realized she could use this skill to support her husband and their five children.
Elena joined an artists’ cooperative that helped her hone her artistic skills. She began weaving on a backstrap loom, creating beautiful shawls, scarves, and huipiles that she sold as a street vendor. Elena is currently the leader of a new group of artists that uses the natural dye process in the weaving of shawls, blankets, hammocks, placemats, table runners, and handbags. Her artists’ cooperative has a store in one of the lakeside villages where they sell their products and support their families. Elena and her cooperative are looking for more opportunities to market their exquisite woven products.