Culture-to-Wear: ALAMA Jewelry

ALAMA is a culture-to-wear label created by a team of skilled women artisans, who were united by their will to promote the legacy of the Maasai tribe of Tanzania through hand-crafted bead jewelry that is designed for women and men who wish to support their culture and sustainable design.

Alama is the brain child of stylist Nini Gollong and journalist Elisabeta Tudor, and is created by a team of skilled Maasai artisans. The project started almost a year ago in Tanzania. The creators were spending some time with the Maasai tribe of Northern Tanzania at this time and they wanted to help the NGO Africa Amini Alama, which improves the living conditions of the Maasai and Meru tribes of Northern Tanzania.

The women artisans who create ALAMA’s one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces

It was with ALAMA that Nini Gollong’s interest for sustainable fashion started. Being able to work on a creative and cultural project, while empowering women to create a sustainable business for themselves and their families based on an ethical process is a very gratifying activity, says the designer.

 

It is first and foremost about doing everything you can to create a product that will please a maximum of people while respecting the environment, as well as the people and animals that are involved in this process. Fashion’s supply and production chain has long been representative of a lot of suffering and unequal, inhuman treatments

 

In the traditional Maasai culture, the women are the ones in charge of the beading. The beaded jewelry pieces accompany the tribe through all stages of life.

Nini and Elisabeta were fascinated by the beautiful traditional jewerely pieces of the Maasai women and men and wanted to help them to create a sustainable business out of it, as we’re both working in fashion. It is important for them that people understand that ALAMA is a culture-to-wear label, not a fashion label.

We’re not imposing the Maasai women to design any new products, we don’t have any influence on their designs and frankly, we don’t want to be involved into the design process.We just want them to do what they’ve always been doing – to create outstanding, traditional jewelry pieces that have a strong cultural meaning.

ALAMA Jewelry pieces

ALAMA Necklaces

There are plenty of beautiful earrings, necklaces and bracelets which can all be purchased online. Each piece is handmade and unique and a celebration of the ancestral traditions of the Maasai people of Tanzania, their semi-nomadic lifestyle and their distinctive dress and jewelry customs.

ALAMA Earrings

You can support the Maasai tribe of Northern Tanzania and celebrate their one-of-a-kind culture by buying ALAMA’s one of a kind hand-crafted jewelry pieces. All revenues go back to support the women who design the jewerly as well as the charitable programs (health, education, social work) of Africa Amini Alama.

 

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