I feel like Nahuala’s abstract style which often seems quite spacious really lends itself well to home decor. There is a great variety within their designs and its due to the region being so large and individual towns developing their own distinct styles.
I have purchased more Nahuala than any other regions textiles, partly due to Nahuala being quite close to Lake Atitlan where I lived so I had easy access to these textiles, and also due to the sheer abundance of them in a great variety of designs.
I feel that for pillows you can’t really go wrong the Nahuala huipiles. I would watch for too many colours that don’t blend - like the 2 colourful huipiles on the bottom layer of the below image of textiles I found on google.
Nahuala also does a lot of mauve / purple, which can be a hard colour to place in a decor setting. Pink is their most popular colour and fortunately is always going to be easy to decorate with.
The other difficulty I came across is that they have a tie dye style that we in the west view as ‘colour run’. They deliberately embroider with coloured cotton they know will run over the white cotton. You have to cut most of this out when making pillows.
Another issue is that often there is not enough embroidery to make a couple of pillows. See brown huipil in the middle row, I love the colour and design but the shape and size make it basically impossible to make a pillow.
One aspect of the Nahuala huipiles that is perfect for making pillows is the construction of the huipil is nearly always two pieces of fabric sewn together down the centre with the seam left undone at the neck hole. In this instance I'm not having to deal with a round neck hole in the centre of my precious textile which usually means sadly cutting out the shoulders.
When it comes to wearing huipiles Nahuala's are an easy choice with their light flowing cotton and fun tribal designs. The pastel ones are highly sort after in a tropical climate like Byron Bay, but also more likely to show stains and damage. The deeper and richer colours are more popular in colder climates. The colourful huipiles below with the soft rayon/cotton mix are such an easy and fun bohemian top to wear with jeans.
I feel that this particular design is unusual for Guatemala, to my mind it has a more European look due to the symmetry and sameness of the design, as well as the simple colour palette. These huipiles are hard to source as the town is small. It is very close to Nahuala so often this design is classified as a Nahuala design, but as you can see from above, ‘Nahuala’ encompasses a large array of different designs due to the size of the region. I love how this beautiful gentle design works in so well with some of the other stronger, more ‘out there’ Guatemalan designs.
That's it folks. Until next time.