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Type: Clothing - Garment
Object Name: Blouse
Local Name: huipil
Place Made: North America: Central America, Guatemala, Chimaltenango, Comalapa
People: Kaqchikel Maya
Period: Early 20th century
Date: 1925 - 1935
Dimensions: L 116 cm x W 103 cm
Materials: Cotton; cotton thread; silk floss
Techniques: Hand-spun; plain woven; supplementary weft
ID Number: T86.0768
Credit: Anonymous gift

The woman’s huipil has a long and ancient tradition in Guatemala and is still worn in parts of the country today. Indigenous garments such as the huipil have roots in pre-Spanish Maya costume, and are often depicted on ceramics and sculpture. A huipil consists of one, two, or three lengths of cotton woven on a back-strap loom and sewn together with an opening for the head. Supplementary weft threads in cotton, silk, rayon and more recently acrylic, are used to float a raised pattern during weaving. Although these rich and varied designs have evolved over time, since the Spanish Conquest, huipil styles have been part of a woman’s distinctive costume (traje) and associated with her community.