Each item of Tjanpi seed jewellery is a unique piece of wearable art; hand made by a female Aboriginal artist from the central desert region of Australia. Each bead itself is a work of art.
To make a piece of seed jewellery, the artist first collects the seeds – gumnuts, quandongs, and ininti. These seeds are native to central Australia and are only available in certain seasons.
Ininti is from the bats wing coral/bean tree (Erythrina Vespertilio), a plant that often features in Tjukurrpa (Dreaming) in the central desert region. The quandong is from the Santalum acuminatum tree; the fruit of this tree is delicious and has been used a food source for thousands of years. The gumnuts are from the various Eucalyptus trees in the region, and range in size depending on the type of tree.
After the seeds are collected, the artist makes a hole in each one using wire heated in the fire, and then places each bead on a stick to paint with different colours and chosen designs. Lastly she threads them onto high quality elastic for you to enjoy a piece of the bush yourself. You can still smell the campfire and desert country on many of the pieces.
Your purchase of seed jewellery supports women of central and western deserts in remote Australia to earn an income through meaningful and culturally appropriate means.
Doreen Driffen makes superb seed jewellery which is available via our online store , Good Spender, via a range of stockists across Australia including NGV Design Store (Melbourne) and The Museum Shop (Canberra) as well as in store at 3 Wilkinson Street, Alice Springs.
Tjanpi Desert Weavers social enterprise also supports many other artists making seed jewellery including Eva Dixon, Roshanna Williamson, Rowena Taylor, Yvonne Lewis, Kukula McDonald (to name only a few). New works in store and online regularly.