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  • Publisher: Thrums Books
  • Edition: BC Paperback
  • Publication: 27 September 2017
  • ISBN 13/EAN: 9780998452357
  • Stock: 14 in stock
  • Size: 216x229 mm
  • Illustrations: 380
  • Pages: 144
  • RRP: £20.99
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Secrets of Spinning, Weaving and Knitting in the Peruvian Highlands


by Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez

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Book Description

Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez provides an inspirational new view into the world of Andean textiles.

'A beautifully informative new book with only one flaw: its title is much too modest! It not only offers, in patient words and detailed pictures, a primer on ancient inca spinning and textile-making, it also spins a tale of ancient heritage and living craft. The book's generous sharing of textile knowledge deeply enriches your own textile practice on many levels.' Anne Pollard Rowe, Research Associate of Indigenous American Textiles at The Textile Museum, Washington, D.C.

Ten years after the publication of her seminal book Weaving in the Peruvian Highlands, Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez has gathered artisans of all ages to share their knowledge, lore, and deep skills, highlighting many of the techniques used by spinners, weavers, and knitters of the Andes. Concise step-by-step instructions and rich photography give readers the how-to of several textile secrets of the Peruvian highlands. Poignant and detailed descriptions of Andean cultural traditions frame each section, providing context and rare insight into what textile work means as a living heritage of the Quechua people. Callañaupa Alvarez pays special recognition to the Young Weavers Groups who are proudly carrying forward the textile traditions of their ancestors with ingenuity and innovation.

About the Author

About Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez

Nilda Callañaupa Alvarez is one of the founders and Director of the Center for Traditional Textiles of Cusco where she works with ten weaving communities to preserve and promote Cusqueñan textile traditions and to support the weavers and their work. Nilda grew up in Chinchero, Peru, learning spinning, weaving, and knitting from her family and other elders of the community. She holds degrees from the National University of San Antonio Abad in Cusco, and is an international speaker and expert in Cusqueñan textiles. Nilda lives in Cusco and Chinchero with her husband and two sons. Her previous titles, Weaving in the Peruvian Highlands, Faces of Tradition, and Textile Traditions of Chinchero have sold more than 40,000 copies worldwide.


Shuttle Spindle & Dyepot

Summer 2018

This book has the most beautiful and detailed photographs of techniques that I have ever seen in a volume of its kind. The pictures are magnificent and the number of color prints is astounding. Each section takes you through the process of spinning, weaving or knitting with step-by-step photos and instructions. If these detailed descriptions don't intrigue you, when you approach the end of the book, there is a wonderful chapter detailing finishing techniques including borders, joins, seams, embroidery, tassels and pom-poms. As a bonus, you can learn how to make a sling-braid.

This book is a tribute to both the techniques of the Andes and the fiber artists that have participated in the Center for Traditional Studies of Cusco. I would say that this book serves as an anthropological study as well. It is a pleasure to see people taking such care to preserve the gorgeous traditions of their culture while surrounded by the push of modernization. I applaud author Nilda Alvarez for helping to make sure that the crafts that have been a long-standing tradition of the region are being carried on with the younger generations. The entire book is of value to anyone working with fiber. How such magnificent textiles are created with such simple tools will leave the reader truly amazed. 

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