Latin Threads Trading Company is delighted to bring you handmade women’s clothing and accessories that look great and feel good too. Available in limited edition quantities, our goal is to fuse the best of contemporary style with the rich artistic traditions of Oaxaca and Chiapas, Mexico. We offer a taste of the classics you know and love as well as a growing selection of our exclusive designs.
Latin Threads is committed to creative enterprise as a foundation for healthy and vibrant communities and we are guided by principles of fair trade and compassionate commerce.
Your purchase supports a pathway out of poverty for our artisans and their families. In Latin Threads clothing you will look good and feel great knowing every garment tells a story.
About the Founder:
It’s hard to believe, but I have to say I have the perfect job. As an artist, traveler, and person who loves living life in all its colors, Latin Threads is my dream come true. When people ask me how I became involved in “the clothing business”, I have to laugh. I find this question entertaining because, really, I am the kind of person who is more likely to wear hand-me-downs than today’s fashion, and because Latin Threads Trading is so much more than clothing. It is the people, the relationships, and the journey of creating beauty that “make” the company, whether it be a beautiful blouse or an educated, happy child.
I started Latin Threads Trading Company while living with my family in a small village outside the city of Oaxaca, Mexico. We moved there for a year abroad to study Spanish and to experience a different way of life. We had no idea our lives would be fundamentally changed through this experience. One year extended into two, two into three, and so on.
Each year arrived with a new excuse to stay on. In our forth year, I suddenly found myself at a crossroads in my career. At the same time, I met Marta. She was standing by the side of the road, looking for a ride. I picked her up and, well, the rest is history. Though the most culturally diverse and artistically rich state in Mexico, Oaxaca ranks as the second poorest in the country with an extreme poverty rate of 76%. Marta is part of that statistic. She is poor and struggles with her husband to provide for their family. Marta is motivated to create a better life, and with Latin Threads providing the opportunity, she has grown in skills, confidence and resources. She, and others like her are my inspiration.
Family by family, our goal is to encourage enterprise, empowering individuals to flourish independently and through their communities.
Latin Threads's Right Hand:
I never imagined there would be so many, many details and people (not to mention blouses!) to keep track of but Celina Cruz, our on the ground person in Oaxaca, somehow manages to keep everything moving in great form. A Oaxacaña, Celina understands the rhythmn of Oaxacan culture and the artisans... Look for more stories and images coming in future months!
Fairly Traded Goods:
Fairly traded goods are quickly becoming the new “haute couture” of the fashion world, and that’s how it should be. As contemporary style and traditional handcrafted clothing converge, it is easy to imagine stocking your wardrobe with exquisite scarves and blouses that are completely handmade and designed to stay active in your closet for years. The best part is, the clothing FEELS good to wear because it’s being made by local artisans who are fairly compensated for their skills and talents.
At Latin Threads Trading, we, along with our artisans, are committed to a shared goal of sustainable fair trade where trust, creativity and empowerment build a pathway out of poverty. The story behind what we create is as important as the product itself because behind every blouse, scarf or accessory there is a person. Together with Pascuala, Marta, Cristina and other indigenous artisans from Oaxaca and Chiapas, Mexico, we collaborate on new designs and reinvent the classics. We encourage artistic vision and the development of good business practices, and share useful skills such as contemporary tailoring.
Artisans work in their homes or in closely connected groups and deliver directly to us during our regular visits to their communities. As they say, good things in life are worth waiting for and the product you buy from Latin Threads Trading is an example of our ongoing commitment to working honorably and ethically in communities with these artisans. We can make a positive difference in their lives, and we hope in yours too.
One year ago Latin Threads began working with two women sewers and now we collaborate regularly with approximately 35 people, mostly women. Our immediate plans include reaching out to more communities in remote areas, solidifying regular design training programs, and offering a scholarship program for girls to attend school at all levels.