SHEMEJI: Small Purple and Yellow Wool Basket
SHEMEJI is a gorgeous colourful striped basket with bold purple and yellow bands – a true work of traditional Kenyan craft, handwoven by a member of the Kamba tribe from wool and sisal. No two baskets in this collection are the same since each is made to the weaver’s own unique design. Use yours as a woven planter for your indoor plants, or use yours for storing toys or toiletries, jewellery, craft materials, keys, wallets and watches. These beautiful baskets are perfect for decluttering whilst bringing a pop of colour and character to any space.
This colourful basket is an original design with tribally inspired geometric woven patterns. Known officially as Kiondos (kee-yon/-doh) and made in rural communities in Kenya, these baskets were originally woven by mothers as practical and beautiful wedding gifts for their daughters. Traditional kiondo weaving is seeing a revival thanks to a surge in demand from the interiors industry, and skilled elders continue to pass on this sustainable craft to their daughters and granddaughters
Durable and totally unique, these baskets are made from wool from second hand jumpers bound around local sisal grass. The weavers regularly visit the ‘gikombas’ (clothes markets) to select and purchase colourful woollen jumpers which are then taken home, washed and unravelled into separate balls of coloured wool. The weavers of the Kamba tribe are extremely creative – they enjoy free reign over colour and pattern choices - weaving each basket their own way. Baskets take up to four days to weave, and weaving is often completed around agricultural duties, household chores, childcare and social events.
Material: SISAL & RECYCLED WOOL (NATURAL & SYNTHETIC)
Dimensions: 31cm Dia x 26cm Height
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.