If you are seasoned teacher or a brand new teacher to mariachi music you will come to find an issue that has been plaguing the mariachi community for years. “Which traje do I get for my ensemble, A traje de charro with embroidery or with botonadura (gala)”.Let’s begin with a little history of the “traje de charro.”
We will start with the word “gala” which in spanish means “dress formal.” As a charro in the early 1900´s, you would use Traje de charro with botonadura (gala) for formal events. This was considered your best suit and most were made of high quality fabric and botonadura made from real silver. This was later adopted by mariachi musicians and used as a uniform for their group and is now the standard for mariachi musician all over the world. “Greca” is “a decorative pattern that has a pattern that repeats itself and forms in erect pattern.” This style was used by the charros in the fields due to its durability and its ability to withstand movement, dirt, and mounting a horse. This style was adapted by early mariachi musicians such as Mariachi Vargas. This style has seem to have lost its place in the mariachi world as metallic suits have been created. “Metallic” is “a fabric, fiber, or color with a metallic sheen.” This has become highly popular with Mariachi groups for the past few years. As we know trends repeat themselves so these three trends will continue in the market place.
So, back to the topic, “Why embroidery instead of gala?” Let's look at it from a school prospective. These suits would need to be used over a span of at least 3 years. With embroidery you do not have to worry about anything coming loose as it is machine sewn into the suit and will not come undone. The downside is, after a few years the greca does tend to lose its color. With metallic you do not seem to have this issue, however, the metallic does get dirtier easier. Traje de botonadura is a great looking, elegant suit, although this suit is used in the professional industry of mariachi. Even as professionals have trouble themselves keeping these individual botonadura correctly sewn to their suit, imagine a students with less experience and less care of their suits will have many issues keeping their botonadura in tact.
As most schools do not have a seamstress on staff, this can cause more cost than the initial purchase and in the end lead to costing more than a suit that is embroidered. As a mariachi musician myself I love to see all types of charro suits being used and am an owner of all 3 types of suits and even a combination of embroidery and gala. I do not think that one style of suit makes you look more elegant. I believe the way you wear your suit and maintain it is what will make you stand out. With that being said, I take pride in the charro suit and make sure that I keep mine clean and in tact.
Please be sure to look at more blogs as how to maintain each mariachi suit and remember, when you deal with La Tradición Music, you are also getting our expertise in the field of all things mariachi related. Other companies have learned from us, but don’t have all the knowledge we have acquired over the years. Buy from the makers, not the fakers!
"La Tradición is the result of the Delgado family business that survived by following the model of making friends, not customers.In 2006, Manuel A. Delgado, third generation old world luthier and owner of Delgado Guitars began La Tradición with the goal of creating quality, handmade musical instruments at an affordable price. With over 80 years [...]