The Story

Otomi culture is one of the oldest, complex, cultures of the Central Mexican Plateau region. 

The indigenous Otomi people, also known as Ñuhu or Hñähñu depending on their dialect, were artisans, blacksmiths, and talented tailors.

Using ancient and traditional designs, Otomi women used colorful embroidery and intricate techniques in their embroidery style on textiles and cotton fabrics.

The Otomi textiles, also known as tenangos take weeks or even years for the women to embroider, and are said to be inspired by cliff painting in the Tepehua-Otomi mountains and by cave paintings found in Central and Northern Mexico.

The symbols and patterns on Otomi embroidery and cutouts can be traced back to prehistoric roots in the area.

Symbols range from animals and plants native to the Tenango area, abstract designs, people, and mythological creatures.

Common motifs are animals, thought to be bearers of important news, and four- and eight-pointed stars intended to represent the cardinal direction.

Other symbols of animals, plants, and mythological creatures may represent fertility, nature, and peaceful spirits that guide us out of harm's way.