Thursday, December 22, 2016

Tres Estrellas Design in Taos

Earlier in the year, while teaching a class in Taos, I took the time to visit a gallery that I had heard of, and what a treat it turned out to be! Tres Estrellas Design features handwoven textiles, New Mexican furniture, pottery, antique guns, Fur Trade Era collectibles, Southwestern art and more.
I had a nice long visit with the owners, Chris and Carla. (She was busy at the loom while we talked).

The name, meaning Three Stars in Spanish, was chosen to "celebrate the three cultures that colorfully define northern New Mexico: Native American, Hispanic New Mexican and Frontier American."
It's a place where "Taos' past meets the present. A time capsule of 19th Century Southwestern Americana, showcasing material culture from each tradition."

The building itself is a historic adobe with wooden floors and small doorways. When you enter, you might just get the feeling that you are being transported back in time.

 "Classic Rio Grande blankets have become iconic expressions of Hispanic New Mexican artistry... Tres Estrellas’s weavers are bringing back the unsurpassed aesthetic of pre-1860 textiles that feature natural light and dark churro yarn, hand dyed with indigo, cochineal and other native dyestuffs. All yarn is subtly age tinted to reflect the rich palette of 19th century textiles. Our designs are transposed from historical blankets that have been painstakingly examined and documented to ensure authenticity down to the warp & weft count." The attention to detail is evident in their work.

The loom in this photo, is showing some of the "coyote" warp, dark and light churro wool plied together. As this warp finishes a new one is tied directly to it to start the next piece. The second warp is indigo-dyed wool. 

In the photo above, you can see Carla knotting the warp ends on a piece just taken from the loom. I think this gives a clear idea of the scale in which she works. And that impresses a band weaver like me who can weave multiple pieces in a day. Her work takes a commitment of much yarn and time. 

 A collection of Navajo and Pueblo traditional sash belts collected and displayed in the gallery.

Chris took a liking to my guitar straps and agreed to carry some in the shop and show them to all his local musician friends as well as visitors from far and wide . Since Taos is becoming know as a hotbed for live music in this part of the country, I was eager to  have a shop represent me here! Read about the Taos Music Scene here:

 Chris built a  nice little wooden wall hanger to display the straps, and has been successful in selling them. I am thrilled to have them displayed alongside the other finely crafted works in this gallery.
You can visit the Tres Estrellas page on Facebook to see more of their lovely gallery and works.

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