Jewellery on a fashion ramp

Design Indaba Expo 2010: See piece's unique collection for the M-Net Face of Africa Finals in Lagos earlier this month.

A unique collection of jewellery first showcased at the M-Net Face of Africa Finals earlier this month will debut in South Africa at the Design Indaba Expo.

The collection is a collaboration between piece founder Eugenie Drakes, master beader Beauty Maswanganyi, winner of the AngloGold Auditions 2009 competition Kristen Malan, and Mijou Beller. This marks the return of Maswanganyi’s work to Design Indaba – in 2005 she attended as an Emerging Creative.

Paying tribute to the people and creative power of Africa, the collection features ostrich shell beads made by the Bushmen in Namibia using the First Peoples’ techniques that are some 30 000 years old; trade route connections with Persia, China and Europe are reflected in the colourful glass beads which were used as a means of barter; cast bronze beads acknowledge the importance of the African Blacksmith within ancient rural communities; hand-made precious wood beads from Mozambique display Africa’s natural abundance; as do magnificent cowrie shells, long used as currency in West Africa and believed to promote fertility; and topped off with coral, symbolising rank and wealth, protecting the land’s fertility, and rarest amber, ever seen as an investment and mark of status.

Inspired by ancient tradition and realised within a contemporary context, these majestic works will be showcased in an unforgettable show on the ARISE fashion ramp in the DStv Event Arena at the Design Indaba Expo. For the discerning buyer, a new range of jewellery drawing on the collection will also be sold by piece at the Design Indaba.  

Established nine years ago, piece continues to celebrate Southern African artistic expression. The store in Johannesburg is a treasure trove of colour and imagination, with accessories for person and home. Expect the unexpected – this is craft with attitude, where old meets new and contemporary design meets ancient tradition. Every piece has a story to tell – the history, the places and the people that created it. piece is constantly exploring new ideas with Southern Africa’s new and established crafters.