Ileli means “ladder” in Xhosa and cocoteeth are coconut shell pieces slivered into fine tooth-shaped beads. kanju’s Cocoteeth Ileli Pillow features beads that alternate to form a vertical patterned stepping ladder. The design’s simplicity draws attention to the gently varied curvature and natural texture of each Cocotooth, lending a sense of effortlessness and relaxed play.
Beneath thatched roofs and in the shade of mango trees, kanju artisans sew, bead, and embroider 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.