Saturday, March 21, 2009

Stamping T-shirts

I never would have guessed that offering a T-shirt stamping (estampados) class would generate so much excitement and interest. T-shirt stamping is the best translation I can come up with for estampados, but I think in english we would call it silk screening (although we probably have a machine sophisticated process that requires less manual labor). We had 19 women gather shoulder to shoulder in the small T-shirt stamping workshop for 3 straight days to learn the basics of starting a T-shirt stamping business. They learned everything from the price of start-up materials, how to make their wooden frames, paint mixtures, burning the design on fabric and actually "stamping" a design on a T-shirt. The women were eagerly asking questions throughout the class. Nonstop questions. Alfredo and Jaime, our novice teachers, explained the process in very simple terms and gave suggestions of good material, places to buy materials, and prices to put on their stamping products. The women got to see the whole process and actually went home with a stamped T-shirt. When I asked the women after class who was planning on using this information to start a small business, everyone nodded their head and answered with an enthusiastic YES.

Why didn't we offer this class in the Hope House? Because we weren't quite sure if, on Peruvian time, we would be in the Hope House. Hopefully next time we can have it there and not be so squished. Next time, there will be a next time for T-shirt stamping, so stay tuned.

Paz ~ Nora

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