Traditional women’s costume from Pitumarca and Chumbivilcas. Collection of Leonardo Arana Yampe. c. Fashion and Textile Museum

Traditional women’s costume from Pitumarca and Chumbivilcas. Collection of Leonardo Arana Yampe. c. Fashion and Textile Museum

WEAVERS OF THE CLOUDS

WHAT? WEAVERS OF THE CLOUDS: Textile Arts of Peru

WHERE? Fashion & Textile Museum, 83 Bermondsey Street, London SE1 3XF

WHEN?  Now until 8th September 

WHY GO?  To go native and distinguish a Polleras from a Chumpi! Discover the vibrant fashions of Peru, ancestral home of the Incas where textiles were considered prized possessions.   

Little has changed in preserving the ancient skills and traditions of weaving colourful cloth that signifies regions, customs and social traits. Merely by the way a hat is tilted, assumptions can be made about a woman’s status, married or not!

Blending contemporary costumes from Peruvian designers who foster tradition with fragments of ancient textiles, photography by Martin Chambi who spread the love for indigenous costume through his work in the Thirties, to the haunting coloratura voice of ‘Inca’ soprano Yma Sumac, it’s a dazzling glimpse into a rich fascinating culture.

IN THE KNOW? Love what you see? Then check out part sponsors Peruvian Connection who draw on Andean artisans to create a modern day collection famed the world over.   Launched in 1976 by mother and daughter duo Biddy and Annie Hurlbut through a joint love of Peruvian crafts, it all started with an alpaca sweater and then became a brand with five collections per year with a folk loving fan base.