Doug Going Photography

Boy Knitting on Taquile Island, Peru

Real Boys Don't Knit

Taquile Island, Peru

Boy Knitting on Taquile Island, PeruTThe pristine, crystal clear blue waters of Lake Titicaca serve as the perfect backdrop for the pastoral scenes commonly found on many of the lakeís remote islands. Taquile Island is home to a unique breed of men who have a passion for knitting. The fashions are made according to a system of deeply ingrained social customs, which are learned at an early age. Males wear tightly woven hats resembling floppy nightcaps, which they take great pride in knitting themselves. The hats are closely bound with social symbolism — they wear red hats if they are married and red and white hats if they are single, while different colors can denote a manís past or current social positioning. Like some whimsical scene out of a childrenís storybook, both men and boys can be seen wandering the island with knitting in hand.