Irma is one of the Cooperative's newest members. She lives in the rural village of Chuacruz, in the South-West of Guatemala. Irma learned to rug hook from her sister Micaela, who has been a member of the Maya Women's Rug Hook Cooperative since 2013.
Irma's designs are inspired by Maya huipils (blouses) from different departments in Guatemala. Each huipil is uniquely decorated with designs and symbols, each with their own meaning. These range from diamonds representing the path of the sun, to representations of mountains, rivers, animals, and people. Irma expresses this storytelling in her rugs.
Irma is naturally creative and always eager to learn. Discovering rug hooking was a way for her to continue a tradition of working with her hands. She was eight years old when her mother taught her to weave, and she also enjoys beadwork, from which she developed a good color sense.
Irma loves rug hooking because it enables her to express herself freely and creatively. With income from the sale of her rugs, Irma is supporting her younger brothers through school and helping her parents to pay the household expenses.
Irma Churunel Ajú