A sleek splash in the Olympic pool by Samantha Arevalo Salinas of Ecuador in the women’s 800-meter freestyle heat yesterday inspired your scribe to refresh her interest in Ecuadorean rugs (alfombras).

Olga Fisch was a significant figure in the global promotion and national protection of Ecuadorean crafts, particularly rugs. She founded Quito’s Folklore shop – a commissioning agency and museum for national craft – and designed many rugs alongside other designers including award winning contemporary designer Belén Mena.

Mena’s moth designs are striking. Ecuador’s biodiversity includes multiple moth species from the Cloud Forest reserve near Quito. Mena doesn’t confine these winged beauties to rugs, but has created a diverse line of products. Don’t read Spanish? Don’t worry – visit this link as the beautiful photos of Mena’s graphics on rugs, wall hangings and bags need no words (plus the site is in English). The bag designs are muy covetable! Discard any preconceived notions of what moth designs look like. Soak in Mena’s interpretations which are both “national” and “international”, which in your scribe’s opinion makes these classics. DJ

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