Years ago, I purchased what became my favorite necklace at Marianne Stockebrand’s Tienda M in Marfa, Texas. A single strand of hand-woven palm, I’d wear it often – usually with a simple dress, or tunic. It has an understated natural beauty coupled with intricacy that sparks curiosity and delight in just about everyone who encounters it. I was worried I’d eventually wear mine out, and that would be that.
I serendipitously came across the necklace(s) again when we started talking to Raul Cabra at Oaxifornia about possible collaborations. He told me they are made with desert palm in the Mixteca Baja in Oaxaca by women from the Cruz family who, traditionally, work the palm inside caves in order to keep the material humid enough to shape intricate designs. The weave you see here is typically used to make toys, but was adapted in a collaborative project between art and design students at CCA in San Francisco, and the Cruz family (2007) to make beautiful necklaces. – Heidi