Sawa Sawa market and/or beach bags are handmade by artisan women in Kenya in an ancient weaving technique. They use organic sisal fiber sustainably harvested from the agave leaves. The materials come from nature. They are eco-friendly and bio degradable. The handles are made from sisal fiber wrapped in leather. The leather comes from the artisans cattle. Sisal fiber is strong, sturdy and resilient. This makes a bag that is unique, sturdy, spacious, textural, rustic and rich with color and patterns. The dyes come from natural sources like plants, tree bark, flowers, soil etc.
The bag was traditionally used by the women to go to the market. Market day was a weekly event. Farmers, bakers, craftsmen etc. would gather to sell their products. The bag was big enough to fit everything.
Originally in the 1600’s, the bags were used by the bantu long distance traders. They travelled on foot from the highlands of Kenya to the coast. They traded spices and poison with the Arabs that sailed along the East Coast of Africa powered by the Monsoon winds. They needed a bag that could withstand the trip and could carry the weight.
In the west, the kiondo is perfect for the beach, resorts and long distance trips. It is also perfect for storage, gym bag etc. Shop the bag HERE
Follow us on Instagram HERE to be the first to know when the next shipment comes in. It takes the women weeks to weave just one bag. It’s a celebration when we have a few hundred bags sent into Austin. They typically sell out on the same day.
The patterns can be as bold and as minimalist as our tastes and imagination.
Patterns, stripes, neutral colored patterns, and bold colors. We have it all.
Want to keep it simple? we can do that too.
Shop a collection that is ethically made, sustainable, unique, and handmade. Support our mission. Donate to our End Period Poverty initiative HERE. Help us keep girls in school.