In Indonesia, Just Trade works with diverse groups of artisan makers in East Java. Our first project with them was a collaboration through ‘Making Links’ (makinglinks5.com). The ‘Elements’ collection is a result of these first workshops.
The glass beads (known locally as ‘manik-manik’) are made from waste glass from a variety of sources, some from manufacturing waste, some collected by pickers from household rubbish, and the rest is unsold glass that is bought up in clearance sales. This glass is given a whole new lease of life when it is first of all ground up into ‘frit’, then melted, coloured and turned into rods before being shaped into beads and incorporated into these collections.
Two villages are involved in the production of the jewellery. In one village, Eko and his growing team (thanks to these collaborations) make all the brass pieces. They are transported to the second village where the glass beads are made by the men and the jewellery is assembled by the women bead weavers under the watchful eye of Mrs Nurwakit.