Describing the Hand-woven Tonga Baskets from Zambia


If you are a home interior designer who adores African art, then you should learn more about Tonga baskets. These are traditional accessories designed by the Tonga people. They live in the South of Zambia and their main income-generating activities are basket weaving and subsistence farming. During the morning hours, the Tonga people work in their gardens and start weaving in the afternoons when the weather is so hot. Living in a dry and barren area, these people depend more on the earnings they get from their basket weaving art. These African baskets are rustically woven in huge numbers by the local women. They are then sold abroad so as to benefit the weavers who receive a portion of the profits.

The weaving art

These African wall baskets are available in a wide range of styles. That’s why they make excellent interior and exterior designing items.  Each basket features intricate patterns and strong stitches. They are made from ilala palm tree, which is largely grown in the area to support this business. The traditional Tonga baskets have a square base and a wide circular rim at the top. The base and the walls are so strong that the baskets last longer. The palm leaf strips that are used to weave these lovely African baskets can be dyed so as to produce vibrant final products. Sometimes the dyed sections are left exposed or covered. It all depends on the weaver’s desired final product. In addition, weavers have excellent art knowledge that enables them to produce a variety of motifs.

The Plateau baskets

If you come across these don’t get confused. They refer to the same thing. These are the actual Tonga baskets from Zambia with a heavy round rim and a square-shaped bottom. These are some of the simplest looking African wall baskets available online. They are the most elegant too, making them ideal wall décor items. One can pick colorful bowls that have been painted with vegetable dyes or get the plain ones without dyes. It all depends on how you wish to use them when decorating a wall. Another way to use these African baskets for home decoration is to store fruits in them. They will look great when placed on your kitchen countertop, dining table or shelf. So use these African woven bowls to display anything, including kids’ toys. A basket that has been produced for two decades and a half now, Tonga is a powerful representation of Zambian culture abroad.

Selecting just the right baskets

No matter how you wish to use your African wall baskets, making a careful and thorough selection is a must. This is one way to ensure that you save money and time. Besides, you want to pick décor items that everyone can fall in love with, and this is an easy task if you know the best shopping hub. It is also necessary to note that some Tongas are from Zambia and others are from Zimbabwe. That’s because there is a Tonga community in Zambia and another one in Zimbabwe. Prior to the construction of the Kariba hydroelectric power dam, they were only separated by River Zambezi. Their basket weaving arts is different and so are their final products.