Meet Our Artisans: Antonio Perez Lopez
Antonio Perez and Ms. Marcela Buc are the owners of the small family business Tipica Palopo, residents of the municipality of Santa Catarina Palopo, Guatemala. Both Antonio and Marcela have over 20 years of marketing of typical Guatemalan products of both wool and cotton behind them. Originally they bought and sold the finished products, but over the years, they began to acquire equipment for the manufacture of the products offered today. Now about 15 weavers are associated with Tipica Palopo, all working to weave wool fabric by hand with wool from the sheep of Momostenango.
Antonio says "We try to keep all our staff to work year round. Sometimes when we have small orders so there is really no need for more wool fabric, but for everyone to have income, we prefer that they continue to weave, so we store the fabrics with us, until we have larger orders again. In this way we try to work together and improve the living situation, both for the weavers and our tailors."
Señor Damiano is one of the tailors in the family business, which has 18 years of collaboration with Antonio and Marcela. Many of Tipica Palopo employees have worked for a long time in the company, and that is also the goal to create long-term permanent employment in rural areas, where it is needed most, and build on the traditional knowledge that exists. Together they run a small shop where they sell many of the wool products to tourists who find themselves in Guatemala. These are a great addition to the remaining sales and create a more secure income for the family and all their employees.
All products that are produced and sold have a process for quality assurance to ensure that no defective products reach consumers. They are constantly working to further develop the assortment so that it will be more appropriate and to find bestsellers. Bags in various styles, purses, hats, jackets, and blankets are the products that Tipica Palopo mainly sells.