All photos by Sidai Designs.
In the next of our “Spotlight On…” series, we are featuring our partner artisan Sidai Designs, a Tanzanian non-profit organization that works completely with upcycled materials to create beaded earrings, necklaces and bracelets.
Founder Eszter Rabin fell in love with the beautiful beaded jewelry created by the Maasai women when she first visited Northern Tanzania in 2009. These women are exceptionally talented artists, creating jewelry worn by all people in the Maasai community from a young age. Oftentimes, however, these women are married by age 13 and become fully dependent on their husbands for income. Sidai Designs was created in 2011 to give these women the opportunity to use their incredible beading skills to earn a living, and thereby become self-sufficient.
Photo by Sidai Designs.
Each piece is made entirely by hand from traditional glass beads, recycled metal beads, thread from salvaged grain bags, old canisters and yogurt containers for the boning, and leather, sterling silver and gold plated beads for the finishing. Along with using environmentally sustainable materials, Sidai Designs pays their artisans a fair income, allowing them to cover their basic needs, medical expenses, education for their children and savings for their families.
Creating beaded jewelry together fosters creativity, cultural pride and a sense of community amongst the Maasai artisans. The Sidai Designs pieces are strongly influenced by Maasai culture, fusing the uniqueness of their traditional beaded jewelry with modern aesthetics.
Visit the Sidai Designs Artisan Page and learn more and to find their products.
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