Tag: orphanelephants

Kawangware Street Children

Living and working in Kenya has its challenges.

The biggest one is to find suppliers. Let’s say it loudly, the chinese market is full of beautiful and cheap items I could buy for Eclastic. Amazing packaging, original findings, website like dhgate, aliexpress, offer a great variety of items to choose from.

BUT…

I don’t want, (and I hope the Chinese readers, if any, will forgive me for this statement) to give my support to the Chinese market. It does not need it.

During my endless research for somebody who could make gift bags at a reasonable price.

I’ve found Morris. He offered just what I needed: gift bags made of newspapers.

  • He did not ask for a deposit or upfront payment.
  • He delivered on time.
  • The bags were super cute and stunning

Morris and his colleague Agasto started Kawangware Vision Centre in 2001 to create and open up positive life opportunities for orphans, vulnerable children and at risk youth in the community. The project then as Kawangware Street Children & Youth Project (a community based organization), started making handmade and designed paper bags out of recycled papers which they sold to tourist and safari companies and the income earned was used to improve their lives as well as maintain their business.”

Wonderful people with a wonderful project. Check their website www.africabags.com

The other day I met Morris and asked if his group could make something different for me

The packaging for Eclastic Elephant Necklace!

They’ve agreed even if is not in their repertoire.

This is how it should look like but with a smaller logo. I am super excited to see what it will look like when finished!

Help us growing. Comment and share!

Thank you!!!

The evolution of a product

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Around 2 years ago, one of the Maasai working at the camp, Steven,  gave me a gift. A small elephant necklace made out of cow bone. It was an unexpected gift that I really appreciated.

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Once home, I tried to cut the same shape on a DVD but it was harder than expected. The trunk was getting broken all the time, the plastic was not melting together, the colours were fading.

I did hundreds of experiments before I got it right.

I started to sell the Elephant necklace at Mara Bush Camp – Private Wing and people loved them!

We got featured on the Air Kenya magazine “Ndege News” and some people came to the camp just to buy the small red elephant necklace.

I was very proud, but not totally satisfied.

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My mum told me once that Elephants with the trunks up bring good luck and that is what everyone needs, isn’t it? So I started to change the original design.

Cutting was even more challenging than before.  But the result was much nicer.

I even dare to say; rather fabulous!

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At the same time I discovered metal stamping. What a cool thing. I couldn’t help but fell in love with it.

But plastic cannot be hammered…so I’ve tried to write something on a piece of aluminium taken from an old broken teapot. I wrote a message to myself “NEVER GIVE UP”.

I wear it all the time.

This is how I started “The Elephant with a Message” that got sold out in very short time at the camp.

I wrote inspirational quotes like “Dreams come true“, “Enjoy each day“, “I can and I will“, “you are special“, “you are loved“, “Keep going“.

I am still not 100% satisfied.

I feel that the little Elephant Necklace is work in progress, It will go through more changes, aiming for perfection.

Stay tuned!

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The Elephant conundrum

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I was thrilled when the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust who takes care of Elephant orphans agreed to sell my little Eclastic Elephants at the curio shop.  I had no idea whether visitors to the orphanage on the outskirts of the capital Nairobi would like my little, coloured, handmade plastic Elephants. 

To my delight they did!

I promised to adopt Elephant orphans when I sell a fair amount of my Elephant necklaces. The sale went so well I adopted to orphans: Embu and Dupotto. Check their history out on the Sheldrick website.

I was not only so happy to adopt the two Elephants but also emotional about it. It’s a beautiful feeling to be able to help.

And i want to adopt more. When you buys the Elephant necklaces I can  help more orphans to a wonderful life.

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