Handwoven crafts from Panama offered as artwork

Molas, a colorful, intricately woven textile that has been made for generations. can be shown as artwork to illustrate memories, dreams or experiences.

PHILADELPHIA – Anthropologie has partnered with House of Nomad on an exclusive new collection of artwork and masks from Panama called the Capsule Collection.

“Known as the crossroads of the world, we had the opportunity to travel to Panama to source for this latest collection,” said Kelley Lentini and Berkeley Minkorst, founders of the House of Nomad, a design studio in Charlotte, N.C. “A country layered with history and culture – it’s no wonder that we didn’t come back empty handed.”

The duo began by searching for molas, a colorful, intricately woven textile that has been made for generations by the local Kuna community. The textiles can be used to illustrate memories, dreams or experiences and are made from multiple layers of colored fabric sewn together and cut to expose different layers and eventually the overall design.

House of Nomad turned these pieces of clothing into art by framing them to put them on display. The collection includes 15 of these pieces that retail for $695 each and can be layered with other art on a console, paired with other molas on a gallery wall or used as a one-of-a-kind piece.

Another local art practice involves making Embera Masks where the women of an indigenous community are known for their detailed beading work and weaving traditions. Each mask is handwoven from Chunga palm fibers and dyed with vegetable dyes from the local roots, berries and river silt. Traditionally, they were used for shaman rituals, and each can take months to complete. The collection features 12 Embera masks that retail for $425 each including a zebra, lion, aardvark and toucan.

“We advise to either hang the masks on a wall in a grouping or put them on a stand on your shelf,” Lentini and Minkort said.

The collection also includes pillows, wallpaper, and a tablecloth as well as dinner and cocktail napkins.

House of Nomad sources from more than 20 countries and works either in direct relationship or via partners that work directly with the artisans.

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