The Quechua language family (the Indigenous languages of South America) is growing. More people speak Quechua now than in Incan times, including several million in Ecuador.
“Minga” is a Quichua word that represents the idea of a collective work effort and expresses the indigenous society’s value of reciprocity.
The stick loom which is still used in many places today, was invented in the Andes region of South America between 4 and 5 thousand years ago.
The majority of weavers in Ecuador are men.
There are at least 82 different indigenous language groups in South America.
It may take a weaver up to three months to knot the fringes of a traditional paño shawl.
Llama fiber is warm like sheep’s wool but is lighter in weight and does not shrink.
South Americans have been knitting for thousands of years, but it was a Peace Corps project in the 1960’s that got the modern industry off the ground.
Panama hats are not from Panama. They are made in Ecuador where they’re called sombreos de paja toquilla and are named after the palm fiber from which they are woven
The modern-day poncho is an adaptation of the traditional Inca tuni.