Hand Made Gifts, Unique Hand Crafted Home Goods, FAIR TRADE

Kenyan Adjustable Cow Black & White Bone Choker/Necklace

Adjustable Cow Bone Choker/Necklace
Adjustable Cow Bone Choker/Necklace
Item# JWL84

Product Description

Adjustable Cow Bone Choker/Necklace

Width: 1 inch
Choker Hanging Length: 8 inches
Necklace Hanging Length: 14 ½ inches

Hand Crafted in Kenya

This stunning choker/necklace was handmade in Kenya using black and white bone beads. The design on the black and white bone beads is created through a dying method known as "batik", which is a wax relief process, this method is used to dye mud cloth.This necklace is adjustable by moving the knots on either side, so that it can be either a choker or a necklace Wealth in Africa is measured in the amount of livestock you own, so everything is used when an animal is killed. The beads of this necklace are made from cow bone that has been bleached and dyed brown, strung together with some black African glass beads.

Owning a piece of African jewelry is more than owning a piece of jewelry its possessing a world of culture and history in its own beautiful form. Even though there is history and meaning behind each piece, it’s the art in the jewelry that grabs the attention of most collectors.

African jewelry is an ancient and time honored art form that reflects the art of African heritage, culture and history. There are several artistic, religious, spiritual and cultural elements of African heritage visible in each uniquely crafted piece of jewelry.

Around the turn of the 10th century, when bronze work was common, crafting these pieces became more intricate. Bronze pieces were normally decorated with ivory or precious stones and several of these pieces were identified with royalty. Beads have also played a very important role in African culture and can be seen today in many of the beautiful pieces of jewelry created by the skilled craftsmen who make them.

Modern African pieces still remain true to the same historic values and meanings of the past. These values represent different elements of African culture and reveal the importance of each piece of jewelry, which in turn makes them so special to collectors and art lovers everywhere.

The history and meaning of each piece of jewelry is unique. It is said that owning one of these pieces provides hope, wisdom and well-being to its owner. So start your own ‘art’ collection today.

About African Trade Beads

African trade beads came about as a result of the need for traders along the route between Europe and Africa for a currency to trade with the Africans. Beads fitted here as the most appropriate medium of exchange due to the affinity that African people had for various types of beads. The trade beads were therefore used for purposes of battering goods of value from the peoples of Africa such as ivory, gold, and palm oil.

The history of African trade beads dates as far back as the fifteenth century with the coming of the Portuguese. Upon arrival in West Africa, the Portuguese discovered just how important beads were to the African people. The beads they found were crafted out of various objects and materials including gold, iron, ivory, organic objects and bone. At the same time, the Portuguese discovered that the resources that the European market was desperate for were in abundance in Africa. The traders therefore decided to use glass beads as a medium in bartering for goods and raw materials with the Africans.

Glass beads were particularly singled out because glass working technology had not yet been discovered in Africa. Therefore, the African people were in awe of the exquisite beads of glass that the European traders had to offer. Because these beads were also used in bartering slaves, they were to later earn the name “slave beads” or aggry beads. Europe responded to the popularity and increased demand for African trade beads by increasing production in cities such as Venice which is today still famous for its unique and rare glass beads.

About Kenyan Culture

Currently there are more than 40 different ethnic group in Kenya.

The main groups of tribes are the Bantu who migrated from western Africa, the Nilotic people who originated from Sudan and the Hamitic group, who were mainly pastoral tribes from Ethiopia and Somalia. The main tribes are Kikuyu (21%), Meru (5%), Kalenjin, Luyha, Luo (14%), Kisii, Kamba, Swahili, Masai, Turkana

The other large ethnic groups include the Luo, Luhya, Kamba and Kalenjin- There are also some groups of people who form a very small population. This includes the tribe of El Molo.

Kenya culture is a fascinating way of life that blends the traditions of thousands of years of African social evolution with the modern influences of the 20th century. The multifaceted culture of Kenya is expressed in different forms, ranging from its people and language, food, music and dance, art, artifacts, theatre and literature to its ethnic values and ethical norms. Combined with other traditions, these forms of expression and lifestyle form an identity that is uniquely Kenyan.

Another fascinating aspect of Kenyan culture is the art and artifacts that Kenya's different ethnic groups craft manually, using readily available local materials. Beautifully carved wood sculptures showing exquisite detail and craftsmanship are produced in large quantities and sold to tourists both locally and abroad.

Other popular Kenya artifacts include colorful hand-woven sisal baskets, Maasai beaded jewelry, gold and silver jewelry, musical instruments, soapstone sculptures, tribal masks, figurines, paintings, prints, batik cloth, kangas and the beautiful traditional Kikoys (African sarongs).

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Small Sterling Silver African Map  Pendant
Size of Pendant
Height: 1 inch
Width: 1/2 inch
Weight: 1.2 grams

Made in South Africa.

This unique and beautiful pendant was made in South Africa by a jeweler that has managed to combine traditional African with a modern medium. The traditional San or Bushman cave paintings have been used to enhance the sterling silver African map pendant. The giraffe, antelope and hunters are cut out by hand. The hut (house) is bas relief.

About Rock Art.

The Europeans who first saw the Rock Art were fascinated but dismissive of their importance. Now days the true value and meaning of their art is being deciphered and appreciated., their art not only shows actual events that happened but are messages full of intricate and complex nuances in the symbols, metaphors and religious meaning.

About the Bushmen.

When 4000 years ago nomads came into contact with the much longer established hunter-gatherers of Southern Africa, they called them San meaning food gatherers. In the 17th century the Dutch colonized the Cape of Good Hope and called the hunter-gatherers of the plains “Boschjemannen” which translates to Bushmen. Bushmen are the longest surviving tribe of Southern Africa they are descendents of the Stone Age people.

About the African Continent

Africa is the second largest continent, occupying about a fifth of the Earths land area. A huge and diverse continent with more than 50 independent countries, Africa contains vast natural resources.

Africa is the second largest continent, after Asia, bounded on the west by the Atlantic Ocean, on the north by the Mediterranean Sea, on the east by the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, and on the south by the Atlantic and Indian oceans. The continent’s total land area is approximately 30,365,000 square km. Africa is cut almost equally in two by the Equator, with the greater part of its territory north of the Equator.

The African continent contains a great natural diversity, from the Sahara desert in Northern Africa to the tropical rain forests in Central Africa; from the arid Sahel belt to the lush islands of the Indian Ocean. African states vary greatly in size; from tiny countries such as the Seychelles and São Tomé and Principe, to the vast states of Sudan and Algeria, and the populous federations of Nigeria and Ethiopia.

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Small Sterling Silver African Map Pendant mixo007