Meet Maiya Devi
Seventy four years old Maiya Devi lives in Lalitpur, Nepal. She has been weaving yak wool blankets and shawls for more than five decades. Over the years she has trained hundreds of women the art of weaving and she feels proud of passing the heritage to future generation. Many women have opened their own shops and often come to visit Maiya Devi to receive her blessings.
She says that in the early days of her profession as weaver, things were not easy; looking after the kids, cooking, feeding the cattle and cleaning the house. After she finished all the household chores she would listen to the radio and weave till late night. She sold her blankets to the merchants in Kathmandu. Most of the money she made from weaving would go towards buying new looms and training women workers in dire need of financial help.
Today Maiya Devi employs 15 women weavers, all of whom left their rural villages in search for better lives. All employees have access to clean water, education and shelter. According to Rama Lama, an artisan in the work shop, " she is like our mother, even better, she treats us with respect and offers us flexible hours so that we can manage our household chores as well".
It takes about 2 days to weave a blanket and an entire day to finish a shawl, such is the effort and honesty behind our handmade shawls and blankets. Try one for yourself or as a gift to your loved ones and help Maiya Devi pass the art of weaving to more women in the coming years.
Thank you for supporting the women artisans of Nepal.