Zulu Hats From Kwa Zulu Natal, South Africa.
Zulu hats or 'Isicholos' in Zulu were traditionally worn only by the married Zulu woman of South Africa during religious and cultural ceremonies, however more and more young woman of all cultures are wearing these Isicholos as a fashion statement. Zulu hats come in every color of the rainbow with varying amounts of detail, they are also available in different sizes. Zulu Hats have become a symbol of the Zulu women's national identity and showcase their creative expression.
Interior decorators in South Africa have also recognized the Zulu hats vibrant colors and intricate African designs make inspiring traditional art pieces.
Proceeds from the sale of these Isicholos creates sustainable employment for a large number of rural Zulu woman who are some of the poorest people in South Africa and without any formal education have little chance of finding other meaningful employment.
HOW TO MAKE A ZULU HAT.
The framework of all Zulu Hats is made from palm fronds and grass woven together using age old basket weaving techniques. This frame is then covered in fabric and an inner lining is added. Lastly an intricate array of embroidered trim-work is added to give the hats their significant Zulu look.