Where Did Mexican Hammocks Originate?
Posted on July 06 2009
If you can think of Mexico as the shape of an elf’s shoe pointing to the right then Yucatan would be the toes. Whilst not many people would be able to point out the state of Yucatan on a map they would be quite familiar with one of Mexico’s most famous coastal towns – Cancun in the neighbouring state of Quintana Roo. Cancun is famous for its crystal clear waters, sandy beaches and beautiful weather. Cancun is a hot spot for travellers all around the world wanting to get away and sample a taste of paradise.
Slightly removed from Cancun and with a population of around 800,000 the State capital of the Yucatan is Merida. A beautiful and less touristy city with an amazing array of arts and crafts. It is here all our hammocks come from, both woven around the city and in the outlying villages. Merida's popularity for hammocks is briefly described in the Lonely Planet Guide for Mexico "Stroll the colonial-era streets of the Yucatan Peninsula's cultural capital and buy a local hammock for your travels."
It is in this region the indigenous Mayans have at times lived a turbulent existence including being conquered by the Spanish in the 1500's. Yet managed to hold out to rebel forces during the War of the Castes.
Hammocks were one of the things returned by the Spanish to Europe, and it is believed from here hammocks became popular as means of bedding in ships.
Original hammocks were made from bark from the Hamak tree until it was replaced by the very versatile sisal cord which brought great wealth to the region. Sisal was eventually replaced by much softer cotton and nylon corded hammocks.
It is these Mayans that we owe our thanks for creating Mexican hammocks.
We are proud to be able to say that all of our hammocks and blankets are woven by local Mayans who have carried on the traditional method of hammock weaving. Passing down the skills and methods of hammock making through the generations. Keeping alive the knowledge of exactly how to make the best quality hammocks.
All of our products help support the local communities by providing much-needed employment and our hammocks come from a fair trade federation member. They are handcrafted in a friendly orientated work environment. By this, we mean the Mayan people are able to make the hammocks in their family surroundings which allow those with children to work from home and at a pace set by them.