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KwaZula-Natal, South Africa
Trufflebeads was started by Susan Sinek after several visits to South Africa. During one of her visits she discovered the amazing necklaces made by Zulu women. Using an ancient craft, these craftswomen make very contemporary jewelry, using thousands of tiny glass beads. The craftswomen function as small business operators, often family units, designing and producing in the rural areas and ultimately selling their products through local representatives, more often, family members too, in the cities. Beauty, pictured, is Trufflebeads' local representative.
These craftswomen have a beautiful sense of color and design and are often given suggestions of different designs styles, colors and color combinations that are wanted by various customers. They are very creative and work very fast, skillfully threading each glass bead, talking among themselves and singing, while they work. This skill of beadwork has long been practiced by Zulu women as part of their cultural heritage. The combination of these skills together with colorful contemporary designs, led to the creation of Trufflebeads.
The workshops that the women work in to produce the beaded jewelry provides them with money to better their lives, and the lives of family and others in their villages of KwaZulu-Natal.
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