The Kuna

February 3rd, 2011

Photos by The Style Crone

As we draw closer to the six year anniversary of Nelson’s diagnosis, I have been having recollections of important and memorable experiences that we’ve shared during our journey over these years.  During Nelson’s remission in 2008 we traveled to Panama and visited a friend who I hadn’t seen since graduate school in the early 70’s.  Reviewing photos from that time, which of course included elephant bell bottoms and maxi dresses, brought much laughter as we reminisced.

During the visit we were introduced to the Kuna, an indigenous people of Panama.  Nelson and I were sitting in a restaurant for lunch in Panama City and as I gazed out the window,  a beautiful woman dressed in the most spectacular, vivid and extraordinary outfit strolled by.  I was transfixed!  I loved the mixing of patterns and  the intricate bead wrapping of arms and legs.  It was a moment that the SC will never forget!

As per Wikipedia:  “The Kuna are famous for their bright molas, a colorful textile art form made with the techniques of applique and reverse appliqué. Mola panels are used to make the blouses of the Kuna women’s national dress, which is worn daily by many Kuna women. Mola means “clothing” in the Kuna language.”

Unfortunately, one week after our return from this glorious adventure, Nelson’s recurrence was diagnosed following a PET scan.  The molas that I had purchased in Panama remain in the box that they were placed in during that distressing time. This post has inspired me to pull that box out and provide myself with a visual treat!

8 Responses to “The Kuna”

  1. lyrebirdgully

    Dear Style Crone,
    I’m wishing Nelson and yourself a well of strength and vitality for 2011. Thanks for sharing with us the beauty in your life even when you are feeling sad and low. Your hats are so special.
    I thought I would give back a little visual inspiration (you may already know this blog):
    And there are some truly beautiful hats in this designer’s catwalk shows, for example

  2. Judy

    Thanks for the pics. The clothes are beautiful and the women do know how to mix patterns.

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  4. Bella Q

    These are wonderful pictures, and thank you for sharing them. I love fashion, costumes really, people’s way of dressing from around the world, so these are wonderful to see!

    I am sorry you and your Nelson’s struggle with illness. You’ll both be in my thoughts in prayers.

    xo. Bella Q
    the Citizen Rosebud

  5. SizzleandZoom

    Did you say you brought back from Panama one of these wonderful outfits?
    I’d like to see you model the look. Very colorful and inspiring.

  6. Elaine Kelty

    Oh do take the molas out and touch them. They will give you strength and inspiration. They need the light as we all do. I treasure the ones I told you about that my son brought back from Panama.

  7. Terri

    What beautiful textiles! I love the bodice pieces. Do I understand correctly that there is beadwork mixed into this? May have to investigate this more.

  8. Camille

    Such beautiful women and colors! I agree that I would like to see you model one of these outfits!

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