Pretty Things: Mielie bag

Friday, July 22, 2011

Okay, I know I've been a very bad foodie blogger by distracting you with photographs from my holiday and pretty pictures of knittery but I have just one more. I'll be good after this, probably.

How can you not be positively smitten by this heart design? I love the colours, the textures, the attention to detail and best of all: it's entirely hand-made.

My dear friend Anne gave me this beautiful Mielie bag. The brandname is 'Mielie' (which is what South Africans call sweetcorn) and I love the way the texture of the fabric resembles the foodstuffs. Each little tuft of colour there is a wrap of fabric, obtained as a bag of off-cuts from mass-production suppliers who make t-shirts and other items of clothing. The fabric scraps are then upcycled by a group of amazing women into a series of gorgeous designs and usable accessories like bags, cushions and purses.

Here is my bag/purse on my desk where I am quite obviously supposed to be working but am instead admiring the hard-work and pretty fabrics that went into this design.

And remember I said it was hand-made? Here ya go: Manyawuza made my little heart bag. Her profile (here) is featured on Mielie's website and because I can't get over how much I love Mielie, their website, their products and their mission, here's a screen shot so you can share in my pretty-website-giddiness.

So, because I've been asked about it a hundred times already, there ya go. I hold onto my beautiful little bagette (small bag, don't judge my food analogies) and show off how talented South African women are - all for a good cause and excellent accessorising.

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  1. That is gorgeous, Stacey! I have some gorgeous beady things I bought from a family selling them at the side of the road and I love them! I'm a firm believer in fair trade and the principle that the makers get a fair deal for their goods. There are lots of shops in SA selling gorgeous things made by Africans for lots of money and I bet a lot of the makers don't see much of that. Have you seen this site?

  2. @Kathleen: thanks for stopping by! It is a beautiful bag, I'm almost reluctant to use it just in case it taints the prettiness. Very seriously considering using it as a crochet-hook case instead!

    @Juanita: I was sitting in a pretty cafe in Newlands when it was gifted to me and I admit, I squealed. Like a girl.

    @Andrea: I completely agree with you: I wish there was more that we could do to promote this (I'm working on an idea at the moment so let's see where that goes) and in the meantime... I hadn't seen Injabulo! I'm going to spend some time having a little looksee now. Thanks for the link! xx


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