MAPENZI: Handwoven Green, Brown and Grey Backpack
Brand new for 2020, MAPENZI is a stylish and totally unique wool backpack featuring tribal-inspired designs in pops of green, brown, grey and blue. Woven using wool unravelled from second-hand jumpers bought at rural Kenyan markets, MAPENZI will bring a hearty dose of ethical colour and craft to any look. Like what you see? Then snap MAPENZI up now because when she’s gone, she’s gone!
This sustainably-produced bag is woven by a member of Kenya’s renowned Kamba tribe, working within a fair trade cooperative. Once the four days of weaving work is done, these woven backpacks bags are sent to a local tannery where soft, cow hide shoulder straps are made and fitted by skilled leatherworkers, using leather that would have otherwise ended up in landfill. Sustainable through and through, MAPENZI's metal bead rivets are made from recycled and sand-casted brass by artisans living in Nairobi’s Kawangware slum.
Each one of these woven bags is unique and sustainably-made, woven according to the weaver’s design choices, choosing from what recycled, coloured yarns are available at the time. Backpacks take up to four days to weave, in between farming, housework, childcare and churchgoing. Basket weaving is a vital source of additional income to these people, whose livelihoods otherwise depend on the volatile nature of crop and livestock farming through drought.
Want to know more about the people behind the bags? Meet the weavers HERE
Material: SISAL & RECYCLED WOOL (NATURAL & SYNTHETIC) LEATHER STRAPS
Dimensions: Bottom Diameter: 24cm, Basket Height: 22cm
Leather used is a by-product of the food industry.
Please note, as this is a handmade product, dimensions & colour may vary from those shown in the photographs.
FAIR TRADE AND HANDMADE IN KENYA
The weavers are our life force - the sheer spirit of THE BASKET ROOM and the raw talent behind every fair trade basket we sell. Every woven basket has been worked on exclusively by one weaver, and each basket is their very own work of art before it becomes yours. Woven meticulously over a number of days, your basket has accompanied its creator on their daily errands from home to field to farm, enabling the weavers to earn a precious second income without having to give up their other jobs and responsibilities.
We’ve searched far and wide to partner up with the most remarkable artisans and networks of weaving cooperatives in Africa. We’re proud and privileged to regularly spend time with them all - getting to know the people, the raw materials and the harvesting, dyeing and weaving processes, first-hand.
The weavers take centre stage. These are their stories. Listen and share.
Where Are The Baskets Made?