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Exquisitely Handmade African Christmas Decorations

Tintsaba Christmas Ornaments
[Image credits: Tintsaba]
Getting ready to trim the tree? Christmas is a time for giving, receiving and sharing so why not let your tree embody that sentiment with meaningful ornaments. Bypass the convenience of picking up mass-produced baubles from your highstreet store, instead find out what local artists, designers or community organisations have to offer, and it goes without saying your local church, school and community fairs are sources for uncovering some unique gems. With so much to chose from I have zoomed the spotlight on organisations like  Tintsaba whose wonderfully simple yet stylish African Christmas decorations brought a smile to my face.

Tintsaba, set up in Swaziland in 1985, specialises in high-quality hand woven products using sisal. An income-generating organisation, Tintsaba enables women in the local communities to become highly skilled master weavers, silversmiths and/or managers, through investing in a continuous cycle of training and product development. A focus on individual development is one of Tintsaba’s core values, creating an environment where the women can participate in HIV/AIDS training workshops, a literacy training programme called Tintsaba Reads and have access to a mobile health clinic. Over the years approximately 900 women have benefited and contributed to the success of Tintsaba.

Tintsaba Snowman and Father Christma

Tintsaba Angels

[Image credits: Tintsaba]
To complete the effect, why not hang your handmade African Christmas decorations on this gorgeous wooden birch tree by South African design company Koop.


[Image credit: Purely African]
Additional Details:
Selected Tintsaba products can be bought at Purely African, prices range from: £3.50-£4.50
Birch Christmas tree: £95

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  • Eight years ago I started a blog as a place to document the interesting things I was discovering with regards to the design and creativity emerging from Africa. From the moment I created my first blog post little did I know where the journey would take me. Fast-forward to present day I have not only been privileged to witness the development of an industry, but to also have an active role in creating awareness about it.

On this journey, I have seen Africa’s design industry grow from a handful of names from a handful countries to a continent wide-reach. Some names that were just starting out have become internationally respected leaders in their field, whilst behind them, a new generation of names are coming up and claiming their place in the industry.

To say that it is an exciting time for African design and creativity would be a gross understatement! We are in a time of rapid advancement and unbridled creative expression, that is setting the foundations and standards for future generations to build on. And like many other emerging industries in Africa, creativity is opening up opportunities to those who are willing to seize them. And seizing them designers are!

And as Atelier Fifty Five begins a new chapter it is an opportunity for me to renew my commitment to supporting the development of the African design industry and helping those I work with and write about, and work with to fulfill their potential for creating world-class brands. 
I invite you to visit our website to discover more. [Link in bio]

Tapiwa, Founder Atelier Fifty Five
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  • Colourful basketry, soulful sculpture and an elegant candle make a nice placeholder we think, as we prepare to usher in a new chapter of the Atelier Fifty Five journey. [📷 credit: @atelierfiftyfive]
  • Gifted hands. A glimpse behind the scenes of Kaross a South African based embroidery initiative, whose artisans transform furnishings into works of art. [📷 credit: Kaross]
  • Tools of the trade, a hand carved printing block stamp by textile designer @juliekouamo whose evocative designs tell the stories of cultures past and present. Julie's textiles feature richly layered patterns, textures and printed pictures that come together to create vibrant collages. [📷 credit: @tapiwamatsinde]
  • Fishermen's boats, a familiar sight along the Senegalese coast line. [📷 credit: @tapiwamatsinde]

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