I just got back from Guatemala where I took some videos of the hatmaking process: bleaching palm, the palm market, braiding palm, and sewing the hats together. Here are a couple of photos excerpted from the videos.
Here's a Quiche woman braiding palm. I think the young apprentices were mostly eager to be photographed. The woman and older girl are dressed in skirt and blouse typical for Quiche women. The younger girl has chosen jeans and t-shirt for this day, but sometimes chooses "traje".
Quiche is the largest of 26 Mayan ethnic groups in Guatemala, each with its own language. There are approximately 1 million Quiche speakers, out of about 6 million native speakers. The population of Guatemala is about 13 million.
This is Marcelo Lux, working on a treadle sewing machine. He is 76 years old and has been making hats since he was 14.
Watch for some video to be posted soon.