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adornment

Single strand of old blue and white glass beads that are threaded onto grass fibre (boabab). Usually worn by circumcised girls and young women but it is also made by wives for their husbands when participating in a dance called muthunguci.

adornment

Necklace composed of thin slithers of scented wood threaded onto organic fibre (boabab). Specialist men would cut the wood but it is the women who shape and thread the beads. These scented beads come from an African blackwood, and once shaped are permanently blackened with plant juices (Rubia cordifolia) and tree bark (Syzygium cordatum). They are then packed in mud to fix the colour and finally given a coating of castor oil.

adornment

Necklace consisting of multiple strands of coloured European glass seed beads. Would have been worn by women.

adornment

Necklace consisting of multiple strands of coloured European glass seed beads. Would have been worn by women.

adornment

Wide belt of woven European glass seed beads on organic thread (boabab). A background predominantly of white that contains a variety of patterns such as zig zags, triangles and lines. This belt would have been worn by young women during dances, which would help to animate the body through sight and sound.

adornment

Single strand of white glass beads threaded onto grass fibre (boabab).

adornment

Three lengths of multi-coloured glass beaded lengths that are looped and joined centrally. European-made glass beads threaded onto grass fibre (boabab).

adornment

Purchased in the 1970s, this popular item consists of round cut red bauxite beads, which originated in Ghana. After shaping, the beads are threaded onto cotton or elastic cord. Items of jewellery, like this example, became popular purchase items in the 20th century.

adornment

Necklace composed of thin slithers of scented wood threaded onto organic fibre (boabab). Specialist men would cut the wood but it is the women who shape and thread the beads. These scented beads come from an African blackwood, and once shaped are permanently blackened with plant juices (Rubia cordifolia) and tree bark (Syzygium cordatum). They are then packed in mud to fix the colour and finally given a coating of castor oil.

adornment

These modern earrings are made out of ostrich egg shell, a popular material that was once used in making fine body ornaments. Today it is often used in the production of souvenirs.