Masaai – Jewellery inspired by the heart of Africa
The PureJewels story takes its hero from India to Africa, before he travelled to England aboard an enormous immigrant ship. During the 1960s, a period when many Indians were taking the brave move abroad, our founder Bhanji Gokaldas left his homeland for Africa. He established a small workshop in Nairobi, where affluent clients ordered bespoke jewellery, and the African aesthetic became a valued part of his design influence.
Native to Kenya is the Masaai tribe, a traditional micro-culture that has thrived for decades. The Masaai now number close to 1,000,000 and their language, customs and dress have stayed the same for decades. They’re famous for their survival expertise and inhabit some of Africa’s protected game reserves. When we designed our Masaai jewellery collection, we wished to honour this ancient tribe and respect their tradition of adornment.
Masaai jewellery is traditionally richly coloured and beaded. The tribe has always worn a great variety of adornment, including headdresses, neckpieces and Masaai earrings. Our interpretation takes a simple shape inspired by the Masaai arrowhead, giving a very distinctively tribal look to the collection. It honours our story and the tribe that has become synonymous with Kenya.
Masaai jewellery pieces
Our Masaai jewellery collection includes Masaai earrings, Masaai cufflinks and the signature Masaai pendant. They make thoughtful gifts for someone with an African ancestry or an interest in the Masaai tribe. Each piece is carefully crafted from 18ct white gold and set with an eye-catching diamond. The Masaai earrings feature rose gold highlights and stunning Marquise diamonds. For us, the design represents an important part of the PureJewels story and our global influence.
If you’d like to come and view our Masaai jewellery then head down to Green Street in London. The Masaai earrings, Masaai cufflinks and Masaai pendant are part of an archived collection but can usually be made on special order.