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The Guapi Tote

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The Guapi Tote 

A handcrafted work of art woven by the Eperãarã Siapidaarã, an ethnic group located on the south Pacific coast of Colombia.


History & Origin

Forced to leave their territories in the Guangüi shelter long ago, 30 families of the Eperãarã Siapidaara indigenous people formed a community called Canaán in the urban area of Guapi where they supported themselves through agriculture, hunting, fishing and handicrafts. It was here that the "Asociación Artesana La Gloria de Dios" was formed by 10 artisans working mainly in the craft of basketry, using ancestral techniques and fibers from "Paja tetera" (Stromanthe jacquinii) or Chocolatillo. In an elaborate process that includes dyeing with vegetal elements, they produce exquisite objects of domestic and decorative use.


The "Cuatro Tetas" Basket

Weaving their history into their bags, the Eperaara Siapidaara women design baskets and pouches featuring forms and symbols typical of their culture. These containers are used for storage in Canaan homes, as well as sold to tourists who come to visit the urban area of Guapi. 


Forms & Symbols

The shapes woven into the bags reflect the Eperaara women’s perspective on nature, animals, their environment and community. For example, the cross-shaped pattern is called "shrimp eye", meaningful because fishing is one of the traditional activities of the Eperãarã Siapidaara, and shrimp are not only a commonly consumed food, but also used to catch other fish. 




The Guapi is a favorite of mine. The style of this bag is unique and versatile – it’s sturdy shape and simple patterning make it perfect for day and evening use. It is remarkable that in modern times, this bag is woven the same way it always has been. Simply gorgeous.

XO DLM Founder, Kiki Shilling




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