These gorgeous beaded items are handmade by the Samburu people in northern Kenya. Using wire and authentic Czech beads - the original beads brought to Kenya by European traders - women create products that exhibit vibrant patterns and styles.
The Samburu people use beads to commemorate all significant events in their lives. The colorful necklaces, bracelets, and headdresses they wear throughout their lifetime tell elaborate stories of family history.
The items made for Western markets also play an important role in the lives of the artisans. The fair wages paid allow the Samburu to pay school fees for their children and buy food for themselves and their livestock when drought plagues their land. In addition, the workshop that employs these artisans uses its profits to fund health clinics and HIV/AIDS tests that are available to all the Samburu in the area.