Things We Love – Zulugrass Jewelry Review and Giveaway {Contest Closed}

maasai-900x300

 

Congratulations to Natalia, who won our ZuluGrass Beads of Learning Bracelet. Stay tuned for more Giveaways!

Here’s the story behind Zulugrass Jewelry – and why we love it.

First some background on The Maasai people in Kenya, who handcraft each piece of Zulugrass Jewelry.

The Maasai are a nomadic, pastoral tribe centered in Eastern Africa. For centuries, the majority of a Maasai family income has derived from herding cattle.

After a terrible drought devastated pasture lands, the men of the Maasai were forced to drive the few surviving cattle hundreds of miles north in search of better grazing land – leaving many of the women and children behind.

Philip and Katy Leakey – who live among the Maasai in Kenya – came up with an ingenious idea to help in a way that utilized the skills of the Maasai women while also making use of the area’s sustainable natural resources.

First, they dried and cut the long grasses in the region. These grasses are then dyed rich hues and strung on super-strength elastic. Czech glass beads are added for sparkle and a little contemporary flair. Then the pieces are sold, individually or in multi strand pieces, as Zulugrass Jewelry.

Zulugrass jewelry is lightweight, durable and versatile. The elastic, which is the same that was invented for the movie Spiderman, is said to hold its shape for over six years, even if worn daily in the sun, shower, pool or ocean. This durability means you can wear the colorful strands as a necklace, anklet, bracelet, hair tie, or choker.

The best part is this: The Leakey Collection now offers employment opportunities to more than 1400 Kenyans. The Maasai women work in the shade of acacia trees using mobile work stations.

The products they make – the items in The Leakey Collection – are now available in more than 1200 stores nationwide or online at http://www.leakeycollection.com

The Leakey Collection has given us a Zulugrass Beads of Learning Bracelet to give away to a lucky Momscape winner.

Every Zulugrass Beads for Learning Bracelet has been designed by Maasai artisans to symbolize the bright futures of educated children. The Leakey Collection donates 100% of its profits from the sales of these bracelets to pay for local teachers’ salaries.

To enter to win the Zulugrass Beads for Learning Bracelet

There are multiple ways to enter, but you must comment below after you’ve done these items because that’s how we’ll choose a winner (at random).You needn’t leave a separate comment for each thing. Just tell me which of the items you did in a single comment.

WAYS TO ENTER

1. Visit The Leakey Collection and tell us, in a the comments section below, which item(s) you like the best: 1 entry

2. Subscribe to Momscape’s RSS feed or email newsletter: 1 entry

3. Like Momscape on Facebook: 1 entry

4. Follow Momscape on Twitter: 1 entry

5. Tweet about this contest with hashtag “#momscape” : 1 entry

(You can even RT this one: New #Momscape #Giveaway: Win a ZuluGrass Beads for Learning Bracelet: http://tinyurl.com/3qz92ej )

6. Blog about this giveaway on your own blog: 1 entry

One winner will be drawn on September 29, 2011 using random.org and will have 48 hours to respond to email notification, after which a new winner will be drawn. *No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. Contest open to US Residents only, 18 and over. Official contest rules are here.

And if you – or someone you know – would like to sponsor a contest on Momscape, we want to hear from you! Email susie at momscape.com

Things We Love – Indego Africa

indego-africa

There’s something very satisfying about finding a great gift or something for your home – and then knowing you can feel good about the purchase because it benefits someone else.

File this one under Gifts that Give Back: Indego Africa uses the power of the internet to bring gorgeous fair trade accessories and home decor products to market in the United States, as well as Canada and the UK. These items are crafted by talented women in Rwanda.

Indego Africa pays its artisans in Rwanda a fair trade wage. And 100% of Indego Africa’s profits go back to the artisans for training programs in literacy, business, and computers.

The items available at the Indego Africa shopping site are some of the same items featured at more than 40 high-end U.S. retailers – from Ralph Lauren and Anthopologie to the Art Institute of Chicago.

Purchasing from Indego Africa allows you to directly empower artisans in Rwanda. Through their site, you can shop online or learn more about purchasing Indego Africa items wholesale.

Another thing we love: each item comes with a hangtag featuring the name and signature of the artisan. Your artisan’s photo and biography are available on the Indego Africa website.

Featured at Anthropologie in Fall 2010 and in the NY Times Style magazine, the Knit Hood can be worn loosely as a cowl, closer to the neck as a scarf, or can be pulled over the head to act as a hood.