Kuwundana Trade Bead Pillow

“Kuwundana” means constellation in Chichewa, a Bantu language spoken in Malawi where kanju’s Kuwundana Trade Bead Pillow is made. Cast brass trade beads are planets framed by ostrich shell beads (drilled by hand from ostrich egg shells) and lucite hammershell sequin stars in a cosmic pattern that is almost as bright and dotted as the night sky in Malawi.

Beneath thatched roofs and in the shade of mango trees, kanju artisans sew, bead, and embroider pillow South African plush cotton pillow covers in both vibrant and subtle hues. Fabric is embellished with unique trade beads sourced from across Africa, some of them centuries old. Each pillow is French-seamed and features a concealed zipper closure and hearty down alternative pillow insert.




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