A Quilter’s South of the Border Travelogue: Cyndy Rymer Shares Her Inspirations

Dates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in OaxacaConsidering Cyndy Rymer’s many jaunts featured here, you’ve got to wonder when she finds time to quilt. She does—boy, does she! (Plus long-arm quilting, pattern design, teaching, and retreating—quilterly destinations, that is.) Today, Cyndy goes international:

I rarely turn down offers to travel, so when my sister called and asked me to join her on a tour to Oaxaca, Mexico during the region’s Guelaguetza festival, I said:  Yes! And I am so glad I did. My artist’s soul is still full of all of the sites, sounds, and color of what turned out to be an incredibly inspiring trip for this gadabout quilter.

Our tour extraordinary group leader, Jean Cockelreas, planned a fun-filled, ten-day whirlwind that included cooking classes at two different locations; demonstrations of dyeing with natural materials; pottery making; spinning and rug weaving; visits to three World Heritage sites; mezcal tasting; a stay at a wonderful B&B called Las Bugambilias; and many delicious feasts along the way.

Guelaguetza Festival–Oaxaca’s Folk Dance Extravaganza

Prepping for the festival.

Prepping for the festival.

Waiting to go on stage.

Waiting to go on stage.

Posing on the streets of Oaxaca.

Street dancers posing during La Guelaguetza.

Oaxacan Textiles from Dyeing to Spinning to Rugs

Natural dye ingredients.

Natural dye ingredients displayed at Zapotec Spirit where we learned about Oaxacan dyeing techniques. The owner is Oscar Perez.

Carmine dye released from crushed Cochineal bugs that live on cacti.

Carmine dye released from crushed Cochineal bugs that live on cacti.

Dyeing wool in a vat of carmine dye.

Dyeing wool in a vat of carmine dye.

Dyed wool displayed next to cochineal infested cacti.

Dyed wool displayed next to cochineal-infested cacti.

Oaxacan artisan trimming  loose threads on woven rug.

In her eighties and still plying her craft, a Oaxacan artisan trims loose threads from a rug.

Rug stall in Oaxacan outdoor market.

Rug stall in a Oaxacan outdoor market.

Clay  and Alebrija Artists Show Their Skills and Handiwork

Irma Blanco, a internationally renowned ceramicist from Oaxaca.

Irma Blanco, a internationally renowned ceramicist from Oaxaca.

Visiting a pottery workshop.

Visiting a pottery workshop.

Apprentice alebrije artist paints a wooden animal figure.

Apprentice alebrije artist paints a wooden animal figure.

Sample of alebrije in a gallery shop.

Sample of alebrije in a gallery shop owned by Jacobo and Maria Angeles. Click the photo to visit their website.

Typical Oaxacan clay sculpture in a folk art museum.

Typical Oaxacan clay sculpture in a folk art museum.

A Oaxacan Visual Feast:  No Color Fear Here

Dates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in OaxacaDates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in OaxacaDates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in OaxacaDates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in OaxacaDates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in OaxacaDates & Places-J:  Cyndy Rymer in Oaxaca

Spicy Deliciousness:  What Do You Do After Touring Day in Oaxaca? Work for Your Supper!

Susanna Trilling's Seasons of My Heart cooking school (click the photo to visit the website).

Susanna Trilling’s Seasons of the Heart cooking school (click the photo to visit the website).

Grinding mole ingredients  at a traditional outdoor cooking school.

Grinding mole ingredients at a traditional outdoor cooking school.

For the last supper we went out! Las hermanas (sisters Cyndy and Sue) strut their Mexican finery.

For the last supper we went out! Las hermanas (sisters Cyndy and Sue) strut their Mexican finery.

I hope you enjoyed this small taste of Oaxaca’s wonders–small taste indeed, I have hundreds of images I could share.  I can’t wait to go back and I hope this visual tour will inspire you to do the same.

True Angle Giveaway Winner:  Deborah!

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One Response to A Quilter’s South of the Border Travelogue: Cyndy Rymer Shares Her Inspirations

  1. Susan Greene says:

    I’m jealous, Cindy — I love Oaxacan art, especially the alebrije animals. Your photography is gorgeous!

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