The Good Weekend, Part 3 – Over 400 indigenous producers in Mexico City

I first wrote about this event six months ago and although this bi-annual event has only been held four times so far, it is already the most important showcase of Mexican indigenous small businesses, including those making handcrafts.

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The Expo de los Pueblos Indígenas is held roughly every six months, but does not quite yet have a fixed calendar, as they look to see what dates work best for its promotional purpose.

It’s not a handcraft event per se, instead looking to promote all kinds of goods and services offered by indigenous individuals and groups including prepared food, grocery items such as sauces, salsas, preserves, jerky, chocolate, coffee and much more. They also have a good selection of mezcal from various states, other liquors and a section promoting ecotourism and traditional medicine.

Because handcrafts remain an extremely important part of the economy of indigenous communities, the fair provides a wonderful opportunity for Mexican craft enthusiasts. The event stands out not for its wide variety, but also its quality. Most major Mexican craft traditions are represented here, along with entrepreneurs with new twists on old products and completely new ones.

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Some of the various shoe styles from Ndavaa of San Dionisio Ocotepec, Oaxaca (ndvaa@gmail.com)

Its has come to called the Expo Refoma in Mexico City home, and each edition is organized better with a new twist. Just prepared foods takes up an entire floor of the 8 floor convention center, and this time, sections dedicated to honey and Christmas ornaments along with those for coffee, traditional medicine, mezcal and cultural events such as concerts and dance.

Vendors are not only selected for being indigenous but also for the quality of their products. However, the products mostly speak for themselves.

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Marble items from Marmoles Maxei of Pueblo Nuevo, Vizarron, Queretaro
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Pine needle basketry from Artemali Ocoxal in Puebla
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Rag dolls from Tlanezi of San Juan Totocinta, Guerrero (tlaneziempresa@gmail.com)
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Mother-of-pearl box of Arte Joya of Ixmiquilpan, Hidalgo 772-124-4049
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Ceramic and cloth dolls by Arte-Sano of Potam, Guyamas, Sonora (Anaodeth13@gmail.com)
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Blown glass ornaments from Artesanias Navideños Chiconahui
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Hardwood cooking utensils by Tamachatl of Pajapan, Veracruz
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Tarahumara crafts from Sapori of Bocoyna, Chihuahua (635 109 9512)
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Pottery from Tlalchiuanij of Tepecoacuilco, Guerrero
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Traditional blouses of Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec
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Pakime bowl from En Familia Pottery of Chihuahua (636 109 9560)
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Ocumicho mask decorated with Patzuaro lacquer and gold leaf by Mario Agustin Gaspar Rodriguez of Patzcuaro; Michoacan (434 342 7453)
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Blouse and skirt by Artesanías Yaqui of Cajeme, Sonora (644 150 0362)
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Mask for the Danza de los Judios (Holy Week) by Artesanias El Chester of Sinaloa (chester43@live.com.mx)
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Alabel Duche of San Luis Potosi (alabel_dw@hotmail.com)
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