• It takes a village to raise a child


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Most of the jewelry below is made by craftswomen in eastern Ghana who are members of the ethnic group called the Krobo. The Krobo people are reputed to be the most romantic people in the country. They place great importance on adornment, especially among women. A traditional queen mother, for example is not considered well-dressed without her beads.

For the Krobo people, beads are the focus of a rite of initiation for young girls passing on to adulthood. In the initiation called Dipo, girls are brought together and taught things which are important to women such as hygiene, family care, sexuality, etc. They live in seclusion from the rest of the village and are fed very well so as to be sure to have a fresh and healthy look for their the end of the initiation. The end of the rite is their first public appearance, where they are presented adorned with nothing but beads which are worn on their wrists, ankles, necks, hands and waists. This rite serves as their passage to womanhood and is still a very popularly celebrated festival for the Krobo people today.

In other parts of Ghana, beads are considered "magic wands" which women use to catch the attention of a suitor. And even today some traditional chiefs wear long strings of beads as ornaments for special occasions.

We also occasionally carry jewelry from other regions of Africa. So, be sure to check back regularly.