Master Weaver Sonia Antonieta Cholotío

Master Backstrap Loom Weaver Sonia Antonieta Cholotío at her home headshot for MayaWeavings
Sonia Antonieta Cholotío

 

Though only 22 years old, Sonia is an accomplished backstrap loom weaver having begun weaving at the age of 10. Unlike the older weavers in the cooperative, Sonia continued her education through middle school but could not go on to high school because it cost too much. As one of the 14 members of her weaving association, Cooperativa de Mujeres Quetzalli, she was chosen for her impeccable skill and beautifully rendered shawls and scarves. Her weavings for the Cooperative are generally made fromcotton weft threads and rayon warp dyed with natural plants. The jaspe figures in her weavings are clearly and precisely woven.

overhead view of a nearly finished cedar-dyed shawl with ikat panels on a backstrap loom
The dye used in this shawl is cedar bark with the inner trunk of the banana plant as a fixative

 

The second time I went to visit with Sonia, she showed me an indigo scarf with diamond jaspe figures that she had just finished weaving.  She and a group of other women are taking jaspe lessons from the Mendozas and this scarf is the first of her jaspe work.
Sonia Cholotío's first scarf with her own ikat work. Indigo dyed ikat with interlacing diamond design
Sonia's first scarf with her own jaspe work

 

Although when speaking with me Sonia seemed a little reserved, it was apparent from the gleam in her eyes that she enjoys tying jaspe and learning a new art form. 

Master Weaver Sonia Cholotío adjusting a backstrap loom to begin a new blue and marroon weaving
Adjusting the loom to begin a new backstrap weaving

 

Sonia, her husband and their 4 year old son live with her in-laws in an extended family with three other master level backstrap loom weavers including her mother-in-law, María Florinda Pérez Mendoza.

 Click to view the product collection of Mayan Master Weaver Sonia Cholotío from San Juan La Laguna Guatemala