The Juju Hat And Its Origins

The Juju Hat or as they are called in Cameroon the Bamileke or Tyn hats from the Bamileke tribes have come a long way from being traditional ceremonial headdress to adorning beautiful interior designer homes as contemporary wall hangings.

For hundreds of years the Bamileke tribes have been creating these hats for their tribal chiefs, royal families and dignitaries to wear during tribal ceremonies. Often wearing them with the Elephant Mask or Mbap Mteng( black and white image below) which denotes power and wealth in its wearers. The hats are significant when an elder dies as it is passed down to the next in line who may inherit the wealth and standing of the person that has died. Juju hats are also worn during festivities and ceremonial dances.

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 An authentic Juju Hat worn on the head during a ceremony in Cameroon  The Juju Hat worn in a ceremonial capacity in Cameroon

Juju Hat worn with a ceremonial Elephant mask.

Intricately made by villagers in rural Cameroon. Each hat is unique and takes 2-3 days to complete. These artisans have been making these hats for years and are master weavers. They are made during the dry months of the year so the grass and feathers can dry before manufacture. The grass base of the hats are delicately woven to create a strong backing for the wood slats which run up the sides creating a large circular platform for all the cured and dyed feathers which are then fitted one at a time to create the beautiful textured Juju Hats which are so appealing. The Juju hat folds up into itself to be very portable when moving or storing. If you were to go to Cameroon or any good markets in Sub-Saharan Africa you will find Juju Hats being sold to local people and tourists.

Juju hat closed. This is how they are stored.         Juju Hats Sold in the Markets in Cameroon and Southern Africa

Today the Juju Hat, whilst still being used in Cameroon for ceremonial reasons, has become a contemporary and colourful wall hanging for homes, hotels, bars, restaurants and all types of interior spaces. They are used by renowned interior designers for their clients, they are blogged about seen on TV and sold all over the world in markets, shops and online stores. The Juju hat adds texture and colour and embodies that raw sense of being from Africa, wild and untamed. It sits on the wall spectacular in its abundance of shades and shapes. A true contender as an Iconic designer piece.

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Pink Juju Hat in Living Room

 

Natural Brown Juju Hat in Bedroom

A cluster of Juju Hats make a spectaular wall feature

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( Delivery cost to the USA is approx $25 for 1- 2 hats)