A terrible drought that ended in 2001 devastated the pasture lands of the Maasai in Kenya's Rift Valley. The Maasai women desperately needed a way to obtain medical supplies, and to feed, clothe, and educate their children. Philip and Katy Leakey, who live among the Maasai in the bush, came up with an idea that would utilize the excellent beading abilities of the Maasai women, and it used grass, an available sustainable resource, as the primary element.
Soon after, Maasai women were harvesting grass, one blade at a time. The long grass was dried and cut into bead-size pieces and dyed lovely hues, which were then strung into jewelry. Zulugrass was born.
These Zulugrass designs, available for purchase here, make unique gifts while providing economic opportunity to the Maasai communities. To purchase jewelry from The Leakey Collection, visit our store.