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Exploring Backstrap Weaving OnDemand Web Seminar

Join Cynthia Alberto as she discusses how to backstrap weave in the traditional Guatamalan fashion.
OnDemand Webinar

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About the Web Seminar


Backstrap Weaving, an ancient technique that has continued to thrive since the Pre-Columbian era, was historically passed down over the generations through Mayan women. Over the centuries, the backstrap weaving technique has remained unchanged, and is one of the ways in which Mayan women have preserved their identity and culture. With one end of the loom bound to a post or tree while the other is tied around the weaver’s waist, the weaver becomes just as much a part of the loom as the weaving itself. During this course, students will learn how to create and weave on their own backstrap loom, as we create exquisite weavings inspired by the Mayan culture.

With great respect for global weaving traditions, Cynthia founded Weaving Hand in 2007. Weaving Hand focuses on the fiber-based traditions of Nepal, Guatemala, Bolivia, Peru, Indonesia, Bhutan, Philippines, Japan, Laos, Morocco and Tibet. A former employee of Stephanie Odegard Collection, Cynthia was inspired by hand-knotted rugs that sustained weaving communities, while also raising awareness and building respect for the legacy of textile and carpet weaving. Cynthia also works with Guatemalan weavers and have partnered with various Guatemalan cooperatives. Mayan Hands is one of the weaving cooperatives Weaving Hand have partnered with.

What You’ll Learn

  • Create a woven sampler with various weaving structures                            
  • Learn how to dress the backstrap loom
  • Explore the experience of weaving with the backstrap loom
  • Discover the feeling of weaving from an ancient loom


Cynthia Alberto is an artist, teacher and the founder and director of Weaving Hand. A graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology (F.I.T.) in New York City, she studied textile surface design with a specialization in weaving. Her personal work as a weaver and fiber artist is to bridge traditional and contemporary forms of weaving, working with conventional materials as well as wires, hairs and other materials. Cynthia is also a backstrap weaver and works with Mayan Guatemalan weavers in Guatemala, Indonesian weavers in Flores Island and New York.


Who Should Download?

  • Weavers who looking to experience traditional weaving
  • Weavers who love cultural textiles
  • Weavers looking to learn how to use the pick up sticks
  • Weavers who looking to learn how make string heddles
  • Weavers who wants to experience how to weave on aackstrap loom
  • Weavers who want to have fun
  • Weavers who wants to challenge themselves


SKU: EP9964

Author/Speaker/Editor: Cynthia Alberto

Format: OnDemand Webinar