The Antigua Project is the third collaboration organised by Rebecca Welz, Professor at Pratt Institute, and student designers and local artisans working together to fabricate products using sustainable, traditional materials and craft techniques. 


Our Mission

In the Spring of 2015 at the Museo Casa del Tejido Antiguo artisans and designers worked intensively for 2 weeks in the studio at the textile museum in Antigua, Guatemala. The working relationship is a collaboration utilizing the contemporary sensibilities of the New York designers and the ancient traditional expertise of weavers, woodcarvers, carpenters, leatherworkers, a shoemaker, a welder and a silversmith.

The environmentalist Paul Hawken writes in his book Blessed Unrest that there are many movements afoot on a small scale that are brewing all over the world which point to global change. 

He breaks the movements down into three major areas: environmental sustainability, social justiceand preservation of indigenous people. As we become more and more mechanized and production and services are increasingly outsourced, these collaborative projects are a tribute to the makers who work with their hands and the traditions of culture that have been passed down for generations.

We are honoured to have been given the chance to collaborate with the artisans and learn from them.

Designing and building from the hip, we found inspiration all around us: in the indigenous patterns, romantic architecture and the new skills we were learning from the artisans. The whole studio spilled out with our backstrap looms as we began learning to weave.
— Design & Craft Collaboration: The Antigua Project, Woodworker's Journal

Project Milestones

  • On September 25th and 26th of 2015, we exhibited 25 pieces of work from our project in a 2 day exhibition at the Brooklyn Fashion and Design Accelerator (BFDA), an organization that values sustainability in fashion and design. 
  • We were able to create a small book outlining our project for The Antigua Project 2015 - 2017.
  • This year we will be exhibiting at Wanted Design Brooklyn.