Gold vibes from grass? YES! Nature is magical and we must value our precious environment to better preserve and care for our only world.
Golden grass, or as it’s know in Portuguese Capim Dourado, is a natural grass that only grows in Tocantins, in the North region of Brazil. Its scientific name is Syngonanthus Nitens. Golden grass is abundant in a remote region called Jalapão, Tocantins. A beautiful, exotic, handicraft tradition using Golden Grass fiber has developed as a result of the life’s work of a visionary woman called Guilhermina Ribeiro Silva, better known as Dona Miuda.
She died in 2010 leaving her community a legacy of traditional Brazilian art, grassroots community organizations, improved financial autonomy and stability.
Dona Miuda saw the gold value of this special Brazilian grass. Her mother taught her how to skillfully weave Golden Grass, a technique she inherited from her own mother who was a native Indigenous woman. Dona Miuda is from the Afro-Brazilian community of Mumbuca in Jalapão.
Some of the neat craft creations that can be made using Golden Grass include:
Dona Miuda made sure her skill survived her by teaching countless artisans her craft. She created the first community association of artisans in Jalapão. The handicrafts are made of coils of Golden Grass sewn tightly together with strips from the Moriche Palm’s (Mauritia flexuosa) young leaves. For decades the handicrafts were only made by women for household uses and/or sporadic selling.
Now there are at least 12 associations working with Golden Grass crafts. In turn, Golden Grass products have become some of the most exquisite crafts in Brazil. Dona Miuda wanted to preserve her mother’s culture. She succeeded and established Capim Dourado crafts as a form of authentic, cultural and traditional Brazilian art.
Dona Miuda also transformed the quality of life in her community. People now have clothes to wear, food to eat and safe homes to lives in. The communities of the Jalapão region know the value of this precious raw material and promote a sustainable process of planting and harvesting Golden Grass. Only one of the approximately 800 members of a community associations can harvest Golden Grass, from September through the end of November.
This art is created with dedication, skilled technique, pride, cultural meaning, positive local impact and sustainability. This art is gold, don’t you agree?
Check out this video summarizing some information on the amazing Golden Grass:
Want some Golden Grass products for yourself?
Explore our beautiful selection at thefob.com which can be delivered worldwide!
Cover page image credit: Vira Mundo e Mundo Virado