MDALASINI: Large Yellow and Black Sisal Basket
The Mdalasini is one-of-a-kind: a yellow and black storage basket. This colourful basket was produced by an extremely artistic craftswoman working within a weaving cooperative in rural Kenya, and created to her very own design. Unique, exquisite and hand woven with love - there is only one Mdalasini. Once it’s gone, it’s gone – so snap it up now!
The making process is lengthy for each unique fine weave basket. Sisal grass is hand stripped using wooden tools and the weavers’ feet, and then it is hand rolled on the thighs before being woven using a traditional twining method. All sisal grass is hand-dyed in large vats of boiling water, and a traditional twining method is used – passed down from grandmother to mother to daughter.
This unique woven basket can be used all over the home for tidying, storing and organising. Pop Mdalasini in the kitchen for storing fruit or veg, use it in the bathroom for storing loo rolls or toiletries, or fill it with toys, blankets and books in the playroom. The possibilities are endless, but for more basket inspiration, see our uses page HERE.
During the dry seasons, farming communities often fail to produce enough harvest to meet their family’s basic needs. Basket weaving as part of a cooperative, these craftswomen are paid a wage and empowered to support themselves and their families with more security, raising funds to pay for school fees and buy food with. Basket weaving is a vital, income-generating craft form, and one that you support directly when you become the owner of one of our beautiful storage baskets. Meet the weavers from this region HERE.
Dimensions: 28cm Dia x 28cm Height
Click here for our basket SIZE GUIDE
Please note, as this is a handmade product, dimensions & colour may vary from those shown in the photographs.
HANDMADE IN KENYA
Our journey into sustainable style began in Kenya, and the lion’s share of our woven baskets are Kenyan-made. Whilst every region of Kenya boasts its own rich natural bounty, each cooperative we partner with offers expertise in its own unique form of basketry. Weaving, dyeing and grass-rolling techniques differ across the regions as much as basket shapes, patterns and structures. These precious crafts are woven through the generations within families - passed along continuous thread from mother to daughter - protecting and preserving an art form as old as man.
Vast and colourful, vibrant and bursting with natural beauty and style, our fair trade baskets are as eclectic as their homeland and its people. From sisal grass to doum palm, banana leaf fibres to palm leaf, each weaving cooperative works with what is locally available and only what can be sustainably sourced, to produce beautiful baskets which are 100% Kenyan made, and ethically produced. All cow hide bag tags, straps, and basket labels are made from leather sourced as a by-product of the food industry. Natural dyes come from pounded roots, bark and vegetables of the region, whilst all synthetic dyes are sustainably sourced.
From the Kamba tribe to the camel-herding Ariaal pastoralists of Northern Kenya, you can read more about the lives of the Kenyan weavers we work with - and the wonderful baskets they produce - below.