It’s been an exciting few months since our last Tribal Drum and we’ve got lots of news to share with you!
With 2018 just behind us and our workshop closed for the rains, we can now sit down and proudly look back on what turned into quite a remarkable year.
New designs, new collaborations, new friends, new artisans, new stockists and even new Royal fans. 2018 will definitely go down as one of the best years ever in Tribal Textiles's 27 year history!
TRIBAL TEXTILES x PATTERNITY
It was a real highlight for the whole company to see our “Crackle Connections” range in London’s famous Selfridges department store.
The co-founders of PATTERNITY, Anna and Grace, found inspiration for the design during their research trip to Zambia, in the details and textures of nature as well as in shapes on the blackboard at our local Malimba school.
The collaboration was featured in major publications across the UK media and even found a new Royal fan in HRH Prince Harry, who admired the range at a reception at the British High Commission in Zambia’s capital city Lusaka!
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in stocking the collection.
ROYAL AUDIENCE FOR OUR ARTISAN PROJECT
It was a privilege to be able to tell HRH about our community Artisan Project in South Luangwa. With DFID
support, we are working with local artists to create beautiful products and provide sustainable incomes.
Thanks to hard work by our team and 15 local artisans, these skilled Mfuwe residents are on the road to becoming sustainable micro-entrepreneurs.
As well as training in business skills such as merchandising, accounting and pricing, Tribal Textiles provides them with an all-weather work space, a market place to sell their creations as well as access to our existing wholesale buyers. All sale proceeds from the market place go directly to each artisan and their families.
EMPOWERMENT IN PROGRESS
Magda and Rufus - two talented South African designers specializing in handicraft – spent several weeks helping our local crafters come up with new designs and teaching them new techniques that make use of traditional skills such as weaving and carving.
We now have 3 generations weaving together at Tribal Textiles: Julias the grandfather, Ruben the son and Richard the grandson. Great to see a traditional craft being passed through the generations!
A CENTRE OF CRAFT EXCELLENCE
Through this Artisan Project, we have become the Luangwa’s primary handicraft destination and one of Zambia’s Centres of Craft Excellence and Innovation. We are very grateful for the support and expertise of PEP Zambia throughout this project.
Next year, we want to inspire new vocational skills training in local schools, with an art workshop for children in the neighbouring villages. We are excited to uncover the wealth of skills that we know currently lie dormant in the Mfuwe population. Watch this space!
This is a wonderful story! Many of you will have met our head starcher Tiza over the years. Tiza is a very talented artist who has always wanted to be an art teacher. We are thrilled that Tiza has won a place at Teacher Training College in Lusaka!
Of course, that means he has left the Tribal Textiles workshop and we will all certainly miss his warm smile and good humour, not to mention his exceptional work. But we are so proud of him and wish him all the best.
A former intern of ours, Cece Miller, who is a talented artist herself, has set up a “Just Giving” page to help Tiza raise funds for college. We love that she is showing her support for Tiza this way and it was a huge success. Good luck Tiza - we know you'll be a superstar and any child that has you for an art teacher will be very lucky indeed!
TEXTILES THAT GIVE BACK
Last year, we introduced our Carnivores range inspired by the South Luangwa’s lions, wild dogs and leopards. We have been very pleased with the response to this new range, especially as 25% from each sale goes towards the Zambian Carnivore Program (ZCP).
We are thrilled to announce that we have raised $5,000 in 2018 towards ZCP’s vital research into wild dogs and other carnivore species in Zambia.
We celebrated the end of 2018 with a big conservation success: the Luangwa Valley is now estimated to be home to Zambia’s largest population of wild dogs!
Wild dog numbers in and around the South Luangwa National Park have been steadily increasing, and there are now an estimated 350 dogs in the Valley as a whole.
To read more about this wildlife conservation success:
All the best for now (and the beginning of the New Year)
from the Tribal Team!