According to tradition, the image of "Our Lady of Guadalupe," appeared to the indigenous peasant Juan Diego on the hill of Tepeyac near Mexico City December 12, 1531. The lady asked that a church be built in her honor.
Fray Juan de Zumarraga, the bishop, instructed Juan Diego to ask the Lady for a sign to prove her claim. The lady told Juan Diego to gather flowers from the top of Tepeyac hill. It was winter and no flowers bloomed, but Diego found every sort of flowers and arranged them in his "tilma" (cloak). When Juan Diego opened the Tilma before the bishop, the flowers fell to the floor and an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe miraculously imprinted on his tilma.
This image, a fused iconography of the Virgin and the indigenous Mexican goddess Tonantzin provided a way for sixteenth century Spaniards to gain converts among the indigenous population while simultaneously allowing sixteenth century Mexicans to continue the practice of their native religion.
In choosing to interpret my apron problem, I envisioned the Tilma as some form of an apron. I paper pieced the sunrays around the lady. The roses were hand appliquéd and trapuntoed with thirty-three yards of hand-made black bias. My hand-dyed fabrics were used. Beads and stars were added for sparkle. I machine quilted the tilma with metallic thread.
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Last Updated April 6, 2013