Have you ever had a favorite leather wallet, purse or boots?
Well, a Marroquinero made that favorite object. The trade of leather goods was introduced to Guatemala by the Spanish in the XVI century.
* Marroquinería - The manufacture of leather goods. The term also refers to the master in the art of working a set of products that are made with leather.
It is a trade that has been transmitted from generation to generation. Although this invention is attributed to ancient Egypt in 6,000 B.C., sandals, cushions, bags and many garments based on animal skins and leathers were already made. The use of leather garments was common throughout Europe and parts of Africa and Asia.
Everything started with the creation of seats for riding horses. After that, the creativity and experience is what brings to life the leather technique. Hammers, blades, knives, nails and pieces of wood are enough for a leatherworker, who for decades have devoted their lives to transforming rustic leather into real works of art, which is not only their means of livelihood, but a way of artistic expression. The majority of Marroquineros, or leatherworkers, have been learning the trade as a family inheritance.
Roberto Martinez Sandoval
For Colibrí Wings, it is a pleasure to introduce our Marroquinero - Mr. Roberto Martinez Sandoval. His talent is raised daily by many women in different countries. We are very blessed to work with such an amazingly faithful man, who believes that GOD gave us a talent, and it was given to us to bless other people. Roberto Sandoval has dedicated 45 years of his life to his business. Like many traditional Marroquineros, his father taught him the craft of leatherwork and now he applies his talents and experience in every single purse that he creates. The majority of cuts and elaboration are made by hand, since this gives them the original touch that identifies him. Each job can take anywhere from 3 hours to a full day of handwork on the leather, depending on the complexity of the design we provide him.
One of his most satisfying experiences that has impacted his life was sharing his knowledge with a group of young people in Quiché, Guatemala. He traveled to a small town called Chichicastenango, and lived there for a few months to teach them how to turn leather into a masterpiece. His expansive knowledge has been an attractive reason for artists that were willing to travel to Guatemala and learn from him, including a recent Egyptian couple that he trained in his art. Roberto is committed to sharing his knowledge and leaving it as a Guatemalan legacy.
Many and her wife from Egypt
The colorful soul of Guatemala is reflected in the cultural elements that Roberto Sandoval has contributed to the unique creations of our Colibri Wings purses. Artistic expressions of spontaneity, technique, and originality are manifested in each work produced by our company.
Pictures provided by Roberto Martínez