"Above all, I hope my hammock designs are recognized for their quality and aesthetic. I'd like for them to be admired and enjoyed as beautiful and functional creations."
"My name is Roger Solís and I'm from the Yucatan. I make hammocks. I studied merchandising but, after finishing my studies, I had the chance to meet a very experienced artisan whom I befriended, and I became interested in his work.
"I began to learn the process of weaving hammocks through this friend, who has a very effective and detailed technique. I liked it so much that I decided to open my own workshop. In the beginning, I had the support of my family and, with time, I was able to start the project on my own.
"I was attracted to this craft because of the variety of colors and combinations along with the effort it takes to produce a quality hammock.
"While starting my workshop I faced a lot of difficulties, mostly because it takes a lot of work to balance finding customers and creating items but, with time and experience, these activities have come together.
"Little by little, the workshop has been growing. With help from my friend and teacher, I've been able to train others and I currently have four assistants.
"The materials we use are wooden frames, which are repaired and reused, and nylon or cotton cords. Once all of the materials are prepared, the process starts by separating the frames and determining the number of spools needed for the size of the hammock. We use two weaves — the 'Maya' which is thick and closed and the 'Mayacón,' which is more open.
"The needle goes through the spool and we walk around the frames, weaving the hammock by hand one row at a time. It's important to pay attention, since any distraction can produce errors such as loose threads or a weakened weave. Once the body is formed, the 'arms,' or ends are made with the help of a chair that gives it shape.
"What I like the most about this work is being able to admire the final design, since it's very satisfying seeing the results of my efforts and the hours I work. I love thinking about the happiness my creations will bring, waiting for shoppers to see my hammocks and admire their quality and beauty.
"In the future, I'd like to be able to sell my hammocks in different places, nationally and internationally. I hope to grow my business and have the opportunity to employ more artisans.
"Above all, I hope my hammock designs are recognized for their quality and aesthetic. I'd like for them to be admired and enjoyed as beautiful and functional creations. I'll keep learning and improving my technique, while appreciating and enjoying my work."