Ecuador is home to great cultural diversity, and is home to many indigenous groups. One way that people of indigenous anscentry express their cultural idenity is through traditional dress.
You actually see a lot of women in Quito wearing tradtitional dress. You only see women in traditional dress, very rarely (to almost never) see men wearing traditional dress. Even when you see couples, the woman will be in traditional dress, the daughters often will too, but not the man or sons.
Otavalo is a town a couple hours north of Quito, which is famous for its open-air market. The city is named after an indigenous group that lives in the city. The Otavalos are much better off financially than most inidgenous groups in Ecuador, because of the market, which is (I believe) the largest open-air market in South America.
This painting is of the traditional dress of the Otavalo women. It is definitely missing some aspects (for example, women wear a small shawl/cape and the way they wear it indicates whether they are married or single), but it does cover the general dress of the Otavalo women.
The dress consists of an embroidered, white top, with a long, black, skirt. The skirt is "belted" by a woven peice of fabric. In terms of jewlery, women wear leyers of gold beaded necklaces in a "bib" style. With age, women accumulate and wear more of these necklaces. They wear bracelets that are of similar style to the necklaces, often with gold or red beads. The Otavalos also wear very simple sandals - women wear black and men wear white.
I've been super busy/super sick a lot these past few weeks, but expect several more blog posts very soon!
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<p>I'm Oonagh (ooh-nah), a junior at Grinnell College, and a Political Science major who fancies herself an occasional artist and a lifelong doodler. I'm very excited and mildly terrified to start my stay in Quito, but I'm very much looking forward to immersing myself in the language and culture.</p>