Shompole is a luxury eco-lodge on the Nguruman Escarpment in Kenya. I haven't yet been to Shompole (note the "yet" – it's on the list of places I must go see!) but I'm fascinated by the open architecture, dissolving the boundaries between outside and in. I imagine that it is at once exhilarating and humbling (the vulnerability of being immersed in the so-called wilderness).
Oftentimes the desire to support African design – and production in general – is there but, the products aren't always very accessible. In this new "Buy African" series, I'll be highlighting various outlets to help you turn your intentions into action.
A chair is not just a chair with these gems from my African product design pinboard that are made using mud cloth, wax print and yoruba beading.
Have a comfortable weekend!
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I recently posted about my 21 days without grains or sugar (and 21 reasons to try it yourself). In response to my challenges, my fabulous friend, artist and graphic librarian Crystal Antoinette Graham, sent me some encouraging tips on how to respond when temptation rears its seductive head while attending events.
As a vegetarian and vegan, Crystal's had 16 years of experience in not having food to eat at events! Here are her top seven tips:
1. Eat a really filling meal before you leave
If you have kids, make them eat too. Even if you think you're not hungry, eat anyway so your stomach isn't fighting your morals.
2. And/Or bring your own food
Depending on the kind of event (formal, casual) and who will be there (family or strangers) either just bring it out (eventually people just realise you're on a special diet and don't bother trying to find things for you to eat) or be a little more discrete.
3. Learn how to say, "I'm not hungry" and change the subject
Or figure out some succinct way to explain that everything looks so good but you can't eat it because of allergies (we ARE allergic to agricultural products), trying to lose weight, health reasons or just make it seem like some vague spiritual reason. Again, change the subject. A room full of happy diners is NOT the time to extol the virtues of your dietary philosophy.
In Marrakech's Medina sits Ministero del Gusto, a showroom for one-off furniture, jewel design and vintage fashion, featuring artists from all over the world . As well as a gallery, Ministero del Gusto is a studio that works on house renovations, interior decoration and house planning projects, creating work that is contemporary with a strong Moroccan influence.
You may recall a recent post showcasing the work of Toyin Odutola. Today I'm pleased to bring you an interview with the artist.
Born in Ife, Nigeria and now based (and largely raised) in the US, Toyin holds a BA and an MFA in Painting and Drawing. She has featured in a couple of solo exhibitions and several group exhibitions across the US. She has been mentioned or had work featured in several publications including ARISE Magazine, ARTFORUM International, BOOOOOOOM!, Pop Africana: The Africana Global Book of Style, The New York Times, Think Africa Press, Vogue Italia and many more. Her work is held in public collections including the prestigious Smithsonian Institution, The National Museum of African Art, in Washington DC. Toyin has also recently published her first book, Alphabet, which she discusses below.
I love the power of a big dramatic necklace. No further fuss or embellishment required! Here are a couple from my "Accessory Mad" board on Pinterest.
What's your go-to accessory?
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