52 Weeks of Life Seen Through My Eyes

Ida's Photo Theme Challenge

19. I Want One


What vivid colors and wonderful designs! How on earth do I choose just one? When I bought my first Mola from the Kuna Indians of Panama, I wanted just one. But one became two, then three, and now I have a small collection.

Molas are painstakingly made by women of the Kuna tribe from the San Blas Islands in Panama. They are reverse appliques sewn by hand and used as panels in the blouses worn by the women. Hundreds are now made for tourists, still handmade, using teeny tiny stitches and embroidery and multiple layers of fabric. The more layers and the finer the details, the more costly the Mola. The women make traditional Molas like the ones in my photos, but they also sew modern designs depicting flowers, plant life and local animals and birds. The designs come in all sizes, as large as tablecloths.

I have been buying Molas for more than seven years, a few each year to add to what is still to be a wall hanging. In the meantime, I decided to make a clutch from one my husband bought when he first started coming to Panama in the 1990’s. I am certain I will be unable to resist purchasing more and I know they will all eventually be used, whether for wall hangings, table runners, pillow cases, or single framed pieces. “I want one” became “I want more, many more”.


One became three…


Three became an entire collection…


One became a clutch purse…



4 thoughts on “19. I Want One

  1. I am glad you did not put this under the ‘It’s a Male Thing’ category of the challenge!!!!!!


  2. they’re stunning …. so much time to make.


    • Patricia, they do take hours to make. I would never sell them for so little, but that doesn’t stop me from bargaining at times. Mindy has some modern designs. You should ask to see them. šŸ™‚


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