Could someone share more detail on types of handicrafts? Any pics of what you bought? Prices? May be interested in the jewelry .... made from ??? Assume this is a cash purchase .... unless the villagers have a four-square on an Iphone?
Sure, I would be happy to share about the exquisite crafts made by the Emberá people. First, the ladies. The women are world known among basket collectors for their tightly woven baskets with very intricate patterns. The baskets are hand made from two different palm leaf fibers and all colors come from natural dyes they create. They weave plates, baskets and shamanic masks. The baskets are so tightly woven they could hold water! They price the baskets at $1 per day it takes to weave it. That does not include the time to collect, prepare and dye the fibers. Baskets can range anywhere from $10-$300 or more depending on the time to weave it, size and tightness of the weave.
The men are very sophisticated carvers of cocobolo (rosewood) wood and tagua nuts (aka vegetable ivory). Tagua nuts come from a palm tree. They carve animals, plants and small canoes from the cocobolo wood and animals from the tagua nuts. They have a keen eye fro nature and many of their carvings have beautiful detail of the animals they depict.
The wood carvings range anywhere from $10-$500 depending on size and intricacy of the carving. The tagua nut carvings prices are from $10-$40 generally.
I would love to send you pictures, however this format does not allow me to attach any. :( I suggest doing an online image search for the words "Embera basket", Embera carving" "Embera cocobolo" and "Embera tagua" to find some pictures of their art.
Yes, these are cash purchases only. There are no four-squares in Panama at all, in most villages there is no electricity, internet or even cell phone signal, so none of the Embera own or have a reason to own an Iphone!
I hope this has been helpful.