Introducing klaylife Clay beaded chandeliers, proudly hand crafted by the women of South Africa.
Drawing on African heritage and local craftsmanship, each bead is hand rolled using raw clay from the region. They are then dried, kiln fired and dip-dyed before being masterfully strung onto its unique wrought iron frame.
Date: September 2014
Initially, our chandeliers were crafted by local women whose lives had been impacted by HIV and so desperately needed an income to support their families. Over time, as our popularity grew, more and more women with differing circumstances approached us for work. As a result our criteria has been broadened to any local woman who is prepared to put in the effort to create something special.
In 2012, 8 ladies were permanently employed. Now, we have over 65 dedicated women rolling beads and creating their own work of art. More importantly, they’re making a difference to their local community.
Today our chandeliers can be found lighting up some of the most gorgeous homes, hotels, restaurants and reception centres around the world.
klaylife™ is run by a South African family now based in Melbourne, Australia. Our partner and designer Merewyn (owner of Hellooow Handmade) works closely with her team to hand create each work of art.
Meanwhile Outside was lucky enough to spend time with Kerri and Phil Jones to shoot the short video you’ve just watched.
I’d always worked for other people and while I found it rewarding, nothing feels as good as running your own business. Every little win feels massive. And when someone says “I love your product”, the sense of pride is overwhelming. Plus the freedom of being able to work from wherever you choose is fairly enjoyable.
I would love us to branch out to other products beyond chandeliers. Other forms of lighting as well as furniture is on my radar. I would also like to extend beyond Australia and NZ.