“My name is Neo Tau. I work as a secretary and weaver at Oodi Weavers, where we produce handmade wool tapestries.
The Oodi Weavers project was created in 1973 by a couple from Sweden with the purpose of creating new job opportunities.
Later on the project was left in the hands of three communities: Oodi, Matebele and Mmopane.
Today there are 21 women working at Oodie Weavers – weaving wool – a job that requires a lot of time and patience.
I work here because I replaced my grandmother who passed away in 2006.
Working at Oodi Weavers is better than staying at home doing nothing, and by doing this I know that at the end of the month, maybe, I will have some money to buy food and anything I might need. I say ‘maybe’ because our salary isn’t guaranteed at the end of the month. It all depends on our shop sales, so if we don’t sell we don’t earn any money.
We are in desperate need of a business network to help us market and sell our products.
Our merino wool comes from South Africa. We hand spin it on wooden spinning wheels and dye it according to our weaving needs. We make tapestries, mostly related to our village life, depicting traditional houses, people and animals. We don’t copy images from photos but use our imagination.
It takes an entire month to make one single tapestry.
Thanks to bigger machineries we can also make bedspreads, tablecloths and napkins.
We also make personalized items. Our customers can pick their favorite designs and colors”.