Weaving a tradition

Gone Rural's Fluoro Vases – Series 2 showcase a modern translation of traditional African patterns.

Part of the Project

From the Series

Master weavers in Swaziland have pushed the boundaries of their traditional crafting skills to showcase a modern translation of traditional African patterns.

Gone Rural, a social enterprise based in Swaziland provides home-based incomes to over 750 rural African women. Through combining an income-generating model with community development projects, Gone Rural has created a holistic approach to business and development.

The social enterprise has over 30 African craftsmen with 12 of them being master weavers with many years experience. Their latest project, Fluoro Vases – Series 2, sees a collection of woven baskets that are bright, bold and beautiful. The fun, graphic vases are a modern translation of traditional African patterns, scaled up with an injection of acid/fluoro tones, says Philippa Thorne, a committed member of Gone Rural Swaziland.

Each basket is made from 100% recycled fabrics and sustainably harvested natural fibres, and was hand-woven by 12 master weavers from the Ngwavuma region in Swaziland. The pieces are woven using a traditional coil technique that is fused with each weaver’s unique, personal touch.

The aim of the series is to push the limits of the weavers’ normal work and to create more refined, large-scale pieces that elevate perceptions of craft locally and globally.

The Fluoro Vases – Series 2 was showcased at Design Indaba Expo’s Africa is Now exhibition under the theme “Africa is Sharp!” which aimed to show off the bright colours and rich patterns that are seen throughout the continent.