Nicola Robertson (call her Nikki), jeweller and proud owner of Zulu Mien, presented Lydia Trade with her products while we were giving our Export Readiness training as Lydia Connect to young and/or starting South-African entrepreneurs. From the first moment we were impressed with the look and feel. When we heard the story behind it, we were even more impressed.
Zulu refers to heaven and mien is in fact the impression a person makes by expressing character or state of being. Wearing a Zulu Mien piece is about expressing your true self what in return gives inner fulfilment.
The symbolic meaning of the colors and shapes has always played a significant role in Zulu beading traditions. Infusing these traditions with a twist of cosmopolitan modernity makes the ancient characteristics of these pieces accessible for the modern buyer who values meaningful beauty.
Nikki is one of those heroes that don’t like the spotlights but whose life is completely dedicated to her community. She invested herself into the people she leads, providing them with training in product design, quality control, costing and pricing, production management and scheduling. The women artisans of Zulu Mien determine their labour cost and are paid accordingly. They are involved in developing new products and/ or designs. In that way they get the opportunity to express themselves as an artisan and so find fulfilment in their craft. All this will optimize their opportunities to sustain and develop themselves.
The pieces are produced by hand in small quantities by a trusted jeweller. The metals are sourced ethically from a precious metal refinery that is a member of the Responsible Jewellery Council.
Zulu Mien uses the highest quality Czech and Japanese glass beads and the best quality Japanese beading thread that does not fray. The pieces are produced and assembled by hand with the greatest care. They are branded with a hand-stamped logo on a sterling silver disk. The customer can be assured of a genuine ZuluMien piece, manufactured to strict quality standards.
‘Proud seller of Zulu Mien products’
The impression you will make as a seller is meaningful in so many ways. The history of Zulu beading is one of bravery, they were worn as medals of honor. It is also a history of spiritual, nurturing creativity, beautiful pieces conveying a message that is also called ‘sentences from the heart’. The beading survived ages and thrived in some eras, especially when Peloponnesian glass beads entered the craft. It signified an era of economic wealth. Again, high quality glass beads entered the Zulu beading artistry and a business leader brings her people on higher levels.
Thank you for making your impression on the world by selling expressions of character!
Contact us about Zulu Mien
+31 6 14394833 / +31 6 28625614
Markenhaven 49, 3826AC, Amersfoort, The Netherlands