Large Mud Cloth Elephant Crafted by Artisans in Mali Measures 8-1/2” high x 4” wide x 10-1/2” deep
Small Mud Cloth Elephant Crafted by Artisans in Mali Measures 7” high x 3” wide x 6-1/2” deep
Mud Cloth Elephants Crafted by Artisans in Mali Available in Small, Medium and Large
Sininyesigi is a Malian women’s association which means, “plan the future” in bambara, the local language of Mali. Sininyesigi, is located in Bamako, the capital of Mali, started as a women’s association in 1995 by 12 women from a small town Segou, today Sininyesigi has 43 members.
The organization has a boutique in the city, which sells various handmade and traditional textiles and products made by member artisans. The sale of artisan made products helps these women earn an additional income and encourage economic independence. The women’s association also provides these artisan members with community facilities such as, kindergarten for their children, basic work equipments and workshop. They also work on health awareness, especially with regards to HIV/ AIDS and other STDs, the importance of nutrition, family planning and education for girls.
In a recent effort to diversify its activities, Sininyesigi built a small peanut sauce making workshop. Local men and women trained by the association work at the workshop to produce peanut sauce, which is sold in the local market. Similar vocational trainings, programs and infrastructural help provided by Sininyesigi has helped many women to benefit and give their children and family a better living standard.
Mud cloth is a traditional fabric from western Africa. The base cloth is hand-woven cotton, traditional designs are hand-painted and the cloth is dyed in natural pigments. These stuffed elephant toys are made with mud cloth and are available in an assortment of natural colors and patterns.
Handmade by artisans at Sininyesigi, a Mali based women's organization. Sininyesigi, in bambara (local language) means to "Plan the future". The organization supports the artisans with health care, child care, nutrition and education. Sininyesigi, also provides local men and women with vocational training, which has helped them find alternate income sources and a better standard of living.
Small measures 7” high x 3” wide x 6-1/2” deep
Medium measures 7-1/2” high x 3-1/2” wide x 9” deep
Large measures 8-1/2” high x 4” wide x 10-1/2” deep
The traditional cloth of Mali is called bogolan or the bògòlanfini, also known as mud cloth. It is believed that mud cloth was first discovered, when a hunter while chasing an animal got mud on his clothes from a river. The mud stain could not be removed. This mud from northern Mali with a natural acid, mineral combination acts like a dye on cotton fabrics, this mud continues to be used for the bògòlanfini.
Traditionally men weave the cloth and women create the designs. 5”-6” wide stripes are woven on a traditional loom. Panels of the woven cloth are joined together, and the design is painted on the surface. Mud cloth making is a traditional technique and is passed on from one generation to the other. The mud used for painting the motifs on the fabric, is mixed with water and set aside to sit for almost a year before being used.
The fabric is first dipped in a solution of tea made from the bogolon tree, an indigenous tree to west africa. The patterns are then painted and once dry the fabric is washed. To enhance the print/ design, the fabric is further treated with a soda solution, which further bleaches the white background. Different colors have a specif meaning in a bògòlanfini, white is worn by girls and women on special ceremonies or occassions, rust depicts the color of blood and grey is worn by hunters.