Meet Ms. Ntando Kunene, manager of House of Yimama. House of Yimama creates hand-made jewelry using an ancient beading process. The jewelry made by House of Yimama is inspired by the diverse cultures of Africa. Ms. Kunene, is of Zulu decent and many of her creations are specifically inspired by the Zulu Culture.
House of Yimama not only provides its customers with beautiful adornments but it also creates jobs for young women in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. These women are able to earn a living by practicing their craft. “Each piece of jewelry is one-of-a kind and expresses the creativity of each beader”, according to Ms. Kunene. “The jewelry is handmade with Czech/seed beads. We use existing designs that are a part of the Zulu / Nguni culture, but also come up with unique designs that are particular to our shop. We will soon be carrying sandals which are made with leather from cattle and springbok hides, some of which will be adorned with beads; and will later introduce a clothing and home ware range made from shweshwe fabric.”
Ms. Kunene wants western consumers to understand the cultural significance of the pieces her company creates. “Our products are a celebration of the majestic cultures of Africa. The Zulu people beadwork reflects a culture of tradition, beauty and symbolism. A string of beads tells a story of the necessity and the importance of each bead in a string. Each bead is of equal importance to any other bead in the string, much as each person/human being in the group/universe is of relevance. The symbolism is of the strength in unity, Ubuntu – I am because you are. I want our consumers to appreciate the fact Africa is not a continent of squalor and disease; it is home to a proud people with vibrant cultures and a strong heritage.”
For those interested in starting their own business, Ms. Kunene encourages you to go for it! “There is nothing more rewarding than seeing something that was a thought in your head, materializing. It will not be easy but with hard work and faith, all things are possible.”
Rest assured that when you shop from WeBuyBlack.com the products are authentically made for your enjoyment. This online marketplace exists a space for black people to support and appreciate the importance of our heritage and culture. Ms. Kunene appreciates that WeBuyBlack is a space where black people are able to support each other, this will enable us to build wealth in our own communities and afford us the ability to take care of our own, states Ms. Kunene
In September, in honor of heritage month in South Africa and this year the Zulu nation is celebrating 200 years since its formation, House of Yimama will have a promotion to mark these occasions. Be sure to check out their shop on WebuyBlack.