Travel Blog

Tonga Stools | Mark Phiri's artefact of the month
Tonga stools are one among hundreds of stools still being used in rural African villages. These particular stools are named after the Tonga people who originated in South Africa and overtime migrated north. Nowadays, this people group is referred to as “Tsonga” in South Africa, in Zimaba...
Hand painted enamelware
We recently received an exquisite range of enamelware products, each piece hand-painted by a Kashmiri artist. These artisans fall under the umbrella of a well-established company who passionately promote craftsmanship in the region, and look after the well-being of the community. Painters aren&rsquo...
Kuba Cloth. Mark Phiri's artefact of the month
Kuba cloth is made in the DRC’s Kasai district from raffia palm leaves, which are collected, dried and stripped into narrow fibers. Strands of raffia are woven on a loom by the Kuba men after they are beaten with a pounder to soften the fibers. The women in the tribe are responsible for the de...
Fante Flags
Fante or Asafo flags are flying into interior spaces across the globe. We have always been drawn to these rich textiles. An interesting mix of colourful, contemporary and almost retro design, contrasted by age and African tradition, causes Fante flags to stand out in the arena of African art. Their ...
Meet Mark Phiri
African folklore tells a tale about a noble man, a Malawian chief who married an African queen from the Mwangawa village. The chief loved his three daughters but his heart ached for a son. And so he left his home to fast and pray in the wilderness – a wild, wild wilderness, home to leopards an...
Ethiopia's remote tribes
On the 20 August the tales of two great explorers collide. Renowned photographer, David Ballam recently returned from the Omo Valley in Ethiopia where he captured an unbelievable portrait series on some of the world’s last unspoilt tribes. Mark Valentine lets us in on his secrets to successf...
David Ballam, photography, black mambas and waking up under mosquito nets
David Ballam is a true artist explorer, a photographer on the hunt for that next great shot. It’s no surprise that his work has found a home in our Kramerville warehouse. Alongside good coffee and a game of darts, Dave has an appreciation for solitude. His lone-ranger instinct has led him all ...
The story behind your Nguni hide
Throughout the ages, Nguni cattle have formed a vital part of the Zulu’s aesthetic and spiritual heritage. The lure and uniqueness of each cow’s skin called for a remarkable cataloging in the tribe’s oral poetry and storytelling.     The metaphorical interaction betwee...
African beads and their history
From the earliest times nomadic tribes have used beads for adornment, magic and bartering. Beads are some of Africa’s oldest artifacts, unlikely to erode like other crafts. African artisans continue to create beautiful beadwork unique to their tribe or region.     NUPE TRIBAL NECK...
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