Lorenza Ruíz Sánchez, Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca

Lorenza Ruíz Sánchez, Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca

Lorenza Ruiz Sanchez is the president of a group of 80 women in the village of El Bosque in northern Chiapas. The area is a few hours from San Cristobal, on a sunny day it is about 30 minutes from the town of Simojovel, well known for its amber. Roads in this area are poorly maintained and the area can be covered by dense fog which can make travel an adventure. 

The Tzotsil village of El Bosque is a village built vertically into the mountains and Doña Lorenza can be found in her home on Calle Juan Pablo II above the civil registry office along the highway in the barrio of Guadalupe, when she is not visiting one of the women in her cooperative or selling her work in Tuxtla or the fairs. 

Most of the women in the area work in cooperatives and the various groups help each other by selling their merchandise.

Doña Lorenza also helps the Wajin group representing 280 women and the 12 de Octubre group representing 40 women. The help they give each other is very important for survival in the area.

The older women of the area wear densely embroidered cross-stitched blanket huipiles, representing beautiful flowers similar to those seen in the mountains. They also embroider pillow covers, tablecloth sets, bags, tablecloths and towels.

A few of the women have learned to make wool rugs similar to those made in Temoaya by the Toluca Otomi. The rugs that are made in Chiapas have Mayan designs and are made from Creole sheep.

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