- Glass Beads and Thread
- French Hooks
- 2.5" L x 1.5" W (6.4 x 3.8 cm)
- Handmade in and fairly traded in South Africa
Made by: Thanda Zulu
Thanda Zulu was established in 2008 to provide opportunity for Zulu women to earn a steady income and carry on a longstanding cultural craft. The majority of the women who work for Thanda Zulu have struggled for most of their lives to earn a sufficient income that will allow them to support themselves and their families. None of these women believed they would ever be able to earn an income through a craft they loved, were skilled at, and could do from the comfort of their own homes.
Thanda Zulu likes to ensure there is a blend of Zulu style and innovation on traditional design included in every season. They look at current fashion trends to influence new designs and color schemes. This is also a great way to keep their beaders engaged and inspired creatively. When they introduce a new color scheme or design, every beader has the opportunity to take home the colors and look at the proposed design and develop their take on the design. They’ll keep reworking the sample until they’re happy with it and then the best variation is chosen to be featured in their collection. It is a great incentive for the individual beader because if their design is chosen, they’ll receive all of the orders for that specific piece. It also gives them a huge sense of ownership and pride.
As a result of the success the beaders are seeing, many of them are teaching their children how to bead so that they, too, can continue this unique craft.