Posts Tagged ‘artists’

The Story of the Tree of life , Arbol de la Vida

The Story of  the Tree of Life, Arbol de la Vida

 tree of life copy

The Tree of Life (Arbol de la Vida) is a clay folk art sculpture from Central Mexico that started in the colonial period.

After the Conquest, the Spanish destroyed religious figures and replaced them with Christian iconography. The original purpose of the Trees of Life was evangelical, specifically the story of Adam and Eve. A reminder of original sin.

Trees of Life are a traditional wedding gift because of the relation to the first human couple (Adam and Eve). They are also considered to be a talisman for the couple for fertility.

As mentioned above, the traditional Trees of Life are based on the first couple, Adam and Eve. You will see many trees of life with images of the couple, usually naked except for fig leaves. The couple is positioned at the base of the tree and often a snake can been seen.

Many variations of the traditional Trees of Life can be found. For instance, a tree of life from Metepec will branch out like a real tree and a tree from Puebla will be more stylized with branches bending inward onto the body of the tree.

Themes of the Trees can vary depending on the artisan. Themes can range from the four seasons, death, chocolate, local dances and food.

Whichever style you choose or prefer they are remarkable symbols of the Mexican heritage created by talented local artisans.


Coast Hwy Traders a Fair Trade Buyer

Coast Hwy Traders purchases all there Trees of Life from Mexico handmade by local artisans. Coast Hwy Traders is a responsible fair-trade buyer.

This Fabulous tree of life is $175.00 and is available at Coast Hwy Traders


fabulous trees of life



Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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Flaming Heart Sacred Heart Milagros

new milagros

Flaming Heart Sacred Heart Milagros

Traditionally Milagros are used by people to petition saints for help or protection. In many churches in Mexico , you see statues of the Virgin Mary or other saints. People pin their Milagros or miracle on these saints .


milagros 2

Each Milagros is made for a specific purpose so their is a lot of variety. Sometimes you come across an unexpected Milagros like a car.
I think of Milagros as having dual or triple meanings, for example a car could mean you need or want a new car or your car is acting funny and you are praying for it not to break down.

The heart, flaming heart (sacred heart) could be a prayer to find love, announcing love or to heal a defective heart.

Milagros are now put on crosses, hands and Hearts for ornamental use.

Visit Coast Hwy Trader for individual Milagros and Milagros art pieces.


 milagros blog 2

Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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The Home of the Tree of Life’s

Izucar De Matamoros, Mexico is the home of the Traditional Mexican Pottery, The Tree of Life




Izucar De Matamoros, Mexico is where the Mexican pottery, the Tree of life’s are made. The city is thought of as the “Home” of the Tree of Life’s. On Bev’s latest trip to Mexico she visited Izucar. Bev has collected tree of life’s for over 25 years so her trip to Izucar was very exciting. She buys a lot of Day of the Dead merchandise from this particular workshop. The craftsmanship and attention to detail by the workers is amazing. Even the children are able to earn extra money after school by helping at the workshop.

It was great to see the young people learning this traditional craft!











Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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Local Business Coast Hwy Traders is Turning 21!


An Iconic Downtown Business Celebrates 21 Years.

Local business Coast Hwy Traders Supports local Artists/Fair Trade

Coast hwy Traders

Coast Hwy Traders is thrilled to be celebrating their 21 first birthday on Saturday, October 22 2016 at noon. We will be celebrating with Mexican Food, Music and door prizes.

Coast Hwy Traders was founded in October 1996 by owner Beverly Goodman as a venue for local artists,fun imports,and unique items. Coast Hwy Traders supports Fair trade buying and they support local charities like an orphanage in Mexico and a children’s foundation in Nepal.

Owner Beverly Goodman has been traveling to Mexico for over twenty years meeting local artists and importing their goods. She first met Moises Rodriquez when he was a young father with two small children. He was living and working in a small village outside TONALA,Mexico. Moises family counted on Bev’s visits to help support him and his family. Moises is now a well known artist. Buying from him was easy as his work is beautiful. Today his children are grown and married. Their room is now a gallery for his art. This is a story repeated many times by the unique art at Coast Hwy Traders.

Coast Hwy Traders also has the largest collection of Day of the Dead merchandise in Southern California.



Artist Moises Rodriquez and his handmade pottery






Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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Importing from Mexico

Shopping in TONALA today


People often come in with items they bought on a trip and want to import. Well my items from my last trip are still in TJ where they have been for four weeks. What makes delays. Well there is a lot of paperwork to do. You have to have receipts for everything you buy. So all those fun one of a kind items I buy at the market in Tonala they need their own receipt. All this information then goes to a broker.

My conversation today with broker….Broker, “we need a copy of your signature.” Okay.

Second call, “You signed your name, we need it printed too”…and so it goes.

The good news is that the items will arrive this week.


Bev shopping trip 2



Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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Dia de los Muertos at Coast Hwy Traders

cht traders window

Dia de Las Muertos will be here before we know it (November 1 st and 2nd). At Coast Hwy Traders we have created our famous Day of the Dead window. I like to have time to enjoy it. We will be posting much more about this holiday. Today I wanted to talk about how much wonderful merchandise we have at the store made by Mexican and American artists. Everyone is on the bandwagon now with Day of the Dead merchandise all made in China, like Ross,Cost Plus, Michael’s even Costco. I  have been told that China sends people to Mexico to buy handmade merchandise to then copy and mass produce. I encourage you not to buy these items ! Buy the real thing!…at Coast Hwy Traders…



day of the dead blog



Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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My Passion Mexican Folk Art


why i write blogs


So I was asked how I got interested in Mexican Folk Art. I have always loved Mexico, even though I grew up in Virginia Beach! I went to the University of Colorado and spent with my roommate one summer in San Miguel De Allende. Our rent was a whopping $68.00 dollars a month and that included a housekeeper who sometimes cooked for us. I took art classes at Instituto Allende.

While in Va Beach I had what I called a Mexican dining room. I would cook Mexican food for my family and friends( the love of Mexican food came from a French babysitter who,took us to our one Mexican Restaurant. She said the hot sauce helped clear her allergies.)

When I moved to California in 1988 my love of Mexico increased tri -fold. I loved going to Tijuana and Rosarito. Through my neighbors I met Ron Slaughter who had traveled extensively through out Mexico locating wonderful Artists. We followed Ron on a 4000 mile trip with Ron meeting artist and filling our truck with treasures.

I opened my store in 1996 and the rest is history!

See more of the Mexican Folk Art I have collected in my home on my Pinterest page “My Mexican House” and see my pinterest “Why I love Mexico”





Coast Hwy Traders

530 S Coast Hwy 101

Encinitas Ca


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Fair Trade at Coast Hwy Traders

At Coast Hwy Traders we try to buy as much fair trade as possible. That means we buy from women’s co-ops, local artists, etc. at fair market value. For example when I am in Mexico at the market in Tonala, I do not bargain. YES  I will say it again , I do not ask for a discount for my volume buys.Why because the art is so inexpensive and they are making around $5.00 an hour to make it.  I was in Peru and bargained a women down on a beautiful tapestry. I have always felt guilty about it, because that dollar or two I saved would have meant so much to her. I do not ask artist for discounts. After all this is their livelihood.

Below are pictures of items I purchased at the Tonala market in Mexico from local artists for the store. I did not bargain!

fair trade 3

fair trade 2

fair trade 1

bev section 2

Coast Hwy Traders Supporting Artists


I first started traveling to Mexico in college. In 1995 before I opened my store in 1996, I took a 4000 mile round trip to meet all the Mexican pottery and Ceramic artists I could find. Jorge Wilmot a very famous ceramic artist was especially helpful.

Today I continue to buy from the many artists, some of whom have become very well known and even famous. One of my favorite artists is Moises Rodriquez. When I first started buying from him, he depended on a handful of buyers to support his family. Even though he lives down a dirt road in a small village outside of Tonala, he always knows when I am in town. Today his children are grown. Their rooms are now a gallery and lots of people shop there. We always have a lovely selection of his Mexican Pottery art at Coast Hwy Traders.

 moises work 2aThis beautiful piece on the wall is one of Moises.

 moises workAnother one of Moises works

Day of the Dead Market at Coast Hwy Traders

Day of the Dead market at Coast Hwy Traders

Saturday October 26th 2013

From 10am to 3pm

click here for directions to the store.


mando artwork

We will have two very talented local artists.

Mando Padilla is a colorful artist who’s passion for Dia de Los Muertos is reflected in his paintings.

“I love what Dia De Los Muertos symbolizes. These symbols sustain longevity through the artists

that honor the holiday”…Mando

wag the handbag

“The colorful art from Mexico is part of my art’s DNA.”

 Mando Padilla lives in Escondido California with his wife and two sons. whom he sites as

his biggest inspiration. His first successful art exhibit was held at the Escondido Arts Municipal Gallery

for the month of July 2013. The event was organized by his wife with help from family and friends.




Influences include Clive Barker (both as a writer and an artist),

H.R. Giger, Frida Kahlo, Keith Haring & Stanley Kubrick .



His Thoughts on Dia De Los Muertos.

“To me, every day is Dia De Los Muertos. When we remember a loved one who passed away,

that is their day.  In a way, Birthday parties are like Dia De Los Muertos celebrations

because you get showered with gifts and surround yourself with your favorite things.

Loved ones enjoy them “with” you. “…Mando




We will also have a very talented jewelry artist.

ChulaMaiz Jewelry


chula maiz earrings

Her jewelry is inspired by the colors of nature, culture, and life.

ChulaMaiz  is a play on words, the name ChulaMaiz was created from playing with the catchy name of a

Mexican corn snack, churritos, named Churrumais and combining two words that identify the collection.

chula 1

Chula meaning charming, cute and beautiful and Maiz, corn, as a symbol representing

culture and roots. The words together create a line of jewelry and accessories

that are unique, bold and fun