Height: 2 inches
Length: 2 3/4 inches
Width: 1/4 inch
Hand Made in South Africa
These beautiful handcrafted Christmas Ornaments are handmade in South Africa, by the Zulu women using traditional weaving and beading techniques. The wreath is shaped out of wire covered with material and then beaded with gold and green African Glass beads. Each one is unique - one of a kind, all slightly different interpretation of the many different women that make them. The color, design and pattern may vary slightly but the quality is never compromised. These stunning wreath ornaments are a necessity on any tree. The price is for one ornament although the one picture shows several together.
About Zulu Beadwork.
To appreciate the true significance of traditional Zulu beadwork, however, one has to understand how effectively the Zulu have integrated social values into their arts and crafts. Traditional colors, color combinations and patterns are still found in modern Zulu beadwork but the real eloquence is rapidly subsiding under the pressures of urbanization and culture change.
Traditional Zulu beadwork, arguably one of the most singular examples of this craft, was at one time far more than a merely decorative art of weaving small glass beads into aesthetically pleasing patterns. These designs were a surprisingly articulate vehicle of communication that helped to regulate behavior between individuals of opposite gender.
The spirit and rhythm of Africa is expressed in vibrant color in this unique art form. All the ethnic groups in South Africa place high value in beads, which at one time were used as currency with which to trade hardware and foodstuff.
The Zulu people are renowned for their exquisite and intricate beadwork, much of which is symbolic in nature – each color and design having its own meaning, for example the traditional Love Letters which carry “messages” from the heart.
“Touch the essence of Tribal Life – create a fashion statement against the backdrop of today’s technological world.
Zulu women are also expert at beadwork, weaving beads into intricate patterns to form jewelery and other decorative ornaments. The beads were first made from ivory, bone, clay, seed, stones, seashells, eggshells, plants, aromic wood and locally smelted iron. Vastly superior glass beads were introduced by European traders and became so popular that there are records of gold, ivory and even slaves being traded for them.
For the Zulu, beads have always been both a means of adornment and a form of art. However, perhaps the most important aspect of beads in Zulu culture is the messages carried by these works of art.
There is complex language of beads, which is most commonly linked with love. Colors have different meaning, white is associated with purity, pink with poverty, blue with loneliness, green with pining, red with tears and longing, yellow with jealousy, black with anger or hurt and striped beads with doubt.