Lakeside Guide to Lake Chapala, Ajijic, Mexico

Elena de Jesús Hernández

At a Glance

Handmade textiles & jewelry by a Trique woman from San Juan Copala, Oaxaca.

More Info

If you’ve been to the Ajijic plaza, you’ve almost certainly passed by weaver Elena de Jesús Hernández, who sets up shop in the northeast corner of the plaza seven days a week.

Elena makes a variety of items, including bracelets, necklaces, key chains, and earrings. But what grabs your attention the most must be the traditionally-woven dresses, ponchos, and blankets.

On some days you can catch her as she weaves with her telar de cintura. Don’t hesitate to approach and observe — she’s very proud of her work, and rightly so. Her designs are intricate, her technique by now intuitive, and as her hands and fingers work expertly you begin to appreciate a lifetime of dedication to her craft.

It takes her about two months to finish a piece like the one she’s shown making with her waist loom in the pictures below. Her prices are ridiculously low considering the energy, detail, and love she puts into her work: sometimes eight months or more to complete a single dress.

Elena, who came to Ajijic 30 years ago from San Juan Copala, Oaxaca, learned to weave at age eight after learning from her mother and her grandmother.

Last updated July 26, 2018

Street View

Address

Central Plaza

Ajijic

HoursClosed Now

Mon12:00pm -8:00pm
Tue12:00pm -8:00pm
Wed12:00pm -8:00pm
Thu12:00pm -8:00pm
Fri12:00pm -8:00pm
Sat12:00pm -8:00pm
Sun12:00pm -8:00pm

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Photos of Elena de Jesús Hernández

Elena working at her handloom.

Elena working at her telar de cintura waistloom.

Using the shuttle to weave the next row in the material.

Using the shuttle to weave the next row in the material.

Working away.

Working away.

Delicately weaving the colorful threads into the cloth.

Delicately weaving the colorful threads into the cloth.

Detail of her work.

Detail of her work.

Fine Art Photography of Lake Chapala

Day of the Dead Skull Altar

Day of the Dead Skull Altar

A skull, white cross, candles, dyed sawdust, marigolds, Corona bottles and other offerings adorn an altar on the Night of the Dead in Chapala.

Purchase This Fine Art Print
Purchase This Fine Art Print
Embroidered work done on a piece of waist-loomed tela (cloth).

A tela (cloth) that Elena made with her waist loom.

Bracelets with some traditional designs (such as the square pattern), as well as the colors of Mexico.

Bracelets with some traditional designs (such as the square pattern), as well as the colors of Mexico.

A Saltillo serape.

A Saltillo serape. Elena doesn't make these herself, but buys them for resale.

Bolsas (bags).

Bolsas: bags.

Serapes and blouses.

Serapes and blouses.

Jimador in Arandas, Jalisco

At Tequila Cazadores, They Use the Mozart Effect to Give Their Agave Juice Happy, Fermented Lives

See this Photo Essay
See this Photo Essay
Embroidered cotton manta blouses.

Embroidered cotton manta blouses.

Tightly embroidered traditional designs from San Juan Copala, Oaxaca.

Tightly embroidered traditional designs from San Juan Copala, Oaxaca.

Detail of an embroidered dress.

Detail of an embroidered dress.

An embroidered dress. Some items take Elena months to complete.

An embroidered dress. Some items take Elena months to complete.

An embroidered dress.

An embroidered dress.

Earrings made from seed pods and beans.

Earrings made from seed pods and beans.

Earrings made from seed pods and beans.

Earrings made from seed pods and beans.

Necklaces made from seed pods and beans.

Necklaces made from seed pods and beans.

Subscribe & get this free 50-page eBook to 22 Holidays & Festivals at Lake Chapala in 2019

Download eBook

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