Circles and Diamond Drop Necklace

Circles and Diamond Drop Necklace

275.00

Elegant and striking, the black and silver classic colour combination combined with subtly engraved tribal design will make this necklace a stand piece in your jewellery collection.

Illies Mouhmoud, a master silver artisan, crafts traditional Tuareg jewellery in his village of Terhazer, near Agadez, Niger. Using a lost-wax method to cast the silver, Mouhmoud first creates a wax mold, forms clay around the mold and pours molten silver into the hardened clay. Using hand tools, he etches traditional designs and adds ebony inlay or jewels to create the finished piece.

Situated on ancient trans-Saharan trade route, the city of Agadez was founded by the Tuareg in the 14th century. Nomadic people of North Africa, the Tuareg are known as The Blue Men of the Sahara for their vivid indigo robes and veils. 

These Tuareg family of jewellery makers have been practicing their craft for generations. Since their ancestors crossed the desert collecting salt to trade - ounce for ounce - for gold, to be turned into grand jewellery for their kings.  

It seems little has changed in hundreds of years. Their canvas is now fine silver, but every intricate design has a traditional, ceremonial meaning; Tuareg jewellery is still fit for a queen. 

DETAIL

Made in Niger

MaterialSilver, ebony and black onyx

Size: 26cm total length when worn with pendant

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IMPACT

UPAP fairtrade KeapSake

Artisans working with the Union of Peasants for Self Development (UPAP) make traditional Tuareg handicrafts. The Tuareg, nomadic herders of Saharan north and west Africa, now also work as traders or cultivate crops in fertile oases.

Here the homes are tents made of woven mats stretched over a wooden frame. Camel caravans pass from Agadez into the Tenere Desert. It will be several days before they reach the salt pits of northeastern Niger, where they will trade millet, dates and the still indispensable salt. 

It is a tough existance in an unforgiving environment. In 1993, young craftspeople in Terhazer, a village near Agadez, the largest city of northern Niger, organised to create leather handicrafts and silver jewellery. After traveling through France, selling from backpacks for several years, Illies Mouhmoud and his friends organised formally and began UPAP in 1999. Tuareg artisans of UPAP use the income from craft production to supplement their subsistence farming and other livelihoods.