THE TRIBAL DRUM
We have had a busy start to 2012 and are excited about the upcoming projects throughout the year. Thanks to some great new orders placed by our loyal national and international stockists we were able to welcome our full team of artists back in March. It was wonderful to have the Zambian music blaring out once more and to see Tribal Textiles come alive after production closed for the rainy season.
With our usual Tribal spirit we kicked off the year with a long list of creative projects; there are plans afoot for a new kids design and new contemporary and organic designs to keep things fresh for you. We were delighted by the enthusiastic response to the new Safari and Contemporary bag ranges and are now pleased to announce the re-launch of our iconic Tribal Art design available in four stunning colourways Fire, Sky, Smoke and Earth and in two design styles, block and stripe!
Did you know…Zambia’s football team, or 'Chipolopolo' as they are affectionately known, beat the odds to win the Africa Cup of Nations this year. In an intense game they won against the favorites, Ivory Coast, 8-7 on penalties after extra time. This match was particularly significant because in 1993 Zambia’s most talented football team were tragically killed in a plane crash on their way to play in the same competition. The Zambian coach explained it was the memory of those exceptional players that gave his team the strength to win and it was an event much celebrated across this football fanatic nation!
With so many new designs and colourways we felt it was important to enlarge our already spacious flagship store to accommodate them all. With the ever increasing demand for our celebrated Kids Range we have extended our shop to include a kid’s bedroom where clients, of all ages, are found getting lost in their imagination surrounded by brightly coloured African animals and fairies in cherry blossom! We have also extended our front showroom so guests are fully immersed in the colourful world of Tribal Textiles from the moment they step into our shop.
2012 sees new members joining our team. Rosie, having cut her teeth as Retail Manager in 2011, has embraced the challenge of becoming our new Production Manager. Lucy, after five years of running reservations and guest relations at a local Safari lodge, has taken on the mantle of running our three shops. We also welcomed our new assistant Marie who, returning to her Zambian routes after her Design & Architecture degree in Belgium, is turning her hand to an array of different projects from management and photography to administration and computer skills. It would not be fair to mention our staff developments without talking about our four new Tribal cats Eeny, Meeny, Miny and Mo. Originally recruited to hunt rats it quickly became obvious that they were better suited to a more relaxing career. They fill their days reclining in our shops only snapping to attention when guests arrive and lavish them with affection – the Tribal rats are delighted!
We are particularly excited to introduce a new Tribal Textiles project. Our Director, Gillie Lightfoot, realized she wanted to use Tribal Textiles’ expertise to give more back and after talks with The Zambian National Milling Corporation about their desperate need to dispose of old Maize or ‘Mealie Meal’ sacs she initiated our ‘Amaizing Bag’ project. Gillie set to work creating fun, durable and trendy designs using the used sacs. Tribal Textiles then employed and trained three local ladies, Dorica, Naomi and Adella, to create the ‘Amaizing Bag’ range. The stunning bags are now on display in the Tribal Textiles flagship store and plans are afoot to distribute them across Safari Lodge curio shops. We will also be launching them to our export market. The beauty of our ‘Amaizing bags’ is that they are not only a truly Zambian bag, made by local Zambians using Zambian ‘Mealie Meal’ sacs, but the profit from every sale is also donated to an incredible local charity, Project Luangwa. Project Luangwa’s mission is to give back to the local community of Mfuwe whilst protecting the unique wildlife of this area; to find out more you can visit their website www.projectluangwa.org.
Our next three months promise to be busy and we look forward to launching our new website along with some beautiful new Tribal designs. In the meantime we hope you will follow us on Facebook under ‘Tribal Textiles South Luangwa’. We will look to keep you abreast of our day to day activities and the highs and lows of running a textile and design company deep in the African bush!