Magazine For Isla Mujeres Charities

Photo by Tony Garcia

Women's Beading Cooperative by Karen Rosenberg

Isla Women's Beading Cooperative
  Creating, inspiring and continuing the communal spirit of
the women of the Maya.

The beading cooperative building
Their work is very high quality, the kind you would find in a juried craft fair. Each piece of jewelry is unique, woven together one bead at a time, handcrafted over many hours, and made from glass seed beads, shells, Swarovski crystals, semi-precious stones and pearls.

Some of the women of the beading coop.
When you are on Isla, be sure to visit the Isla Women's Beading Cooperative in La Gloria. This group of amazing artists (~57 women) create one of a kind handcrafted beaded jewelry ... necklaces, earrings, bracelets, purses and more. 

 The play of texture, color, and light reflects the centuries old Mayan heritage which they bring to their designs.
 Each woman earns a percentage of the sale of one of their pieces, with a percentage going back into the cooperative to buy beads and other supplies. With this income, the women can pay for housing, food and school tuition for their children. In addition, as the cooperative has grown, the women have a larger social support group and the cooperative functions as an extended family. 

If you stop at the storefront, you will almost always meet a group of the women beading around a table.

The cooperative is open Monday through Saturday, ~9 am – 4 pm

If you are traveling to Isla, consider donating glass seed beads, size #11, round or bugle, or any other beads that you think are beautiful. These women are so talented they will create a design with any kind of bead, pearls, crystals, stones, etc that you donate! 

  • If you are taking a taxi:
    Ask or show the cabbie: "El Taller de Artesanias de Mujeres" en colonia La Gloria, cerca de la Iglesia Catolica (Sagrado Corazón)  y Cruz Roja.
    In English: The Women Artisan's store in colonia La Gloia, by the (Sacred Heart) Catholic Church  & the Red Cross.
  • If you are renting a golf cart from downtown:
         Drive south on the western perimeter road (Rueda Medina) until the Mundaca pavilion, and turn east/left onto the divided boulevard (Avenue de las Peces) . Continue for three blocks, past the Catholic Church. The co op is on the left side of the boulevard, with the Red Cross behind it on a side street.
  • The public bus goes right by the cooperative also.

 Here is a map of the location