“Why do we need that anymore?” I often ask my husband when he picks some rusty screws or a plastic box out of the garbage that I threw away. “We’ll know that when the time comes,’ he says most of the time and hoards his valuable finds in some corner. Much remains then for many years on these “Messie islands”, with which I gave up already long ago to tidy them up. But some hooks or plastic cans have found further use as lamp suspensions or storage boxes for small things.

As incomprehensible as my husband’s garbage rescue actions sometimes seem to me, I respect them as much as I do now. The desert life is barren and the people who live here would never get the idea to throw away something that could be used as a spare part or to repair something else. Even torn garments are mended, broken stockings stuffed. Anything that no longer fits is changed. Clothes are often sewn by oneself and textile remnants are used, for example, to make small bags and pouches, which then – lovingly embroidered – shine as new pieces of jewellery.

In the meantime, the Bedouin women from the Catharine region also buy the fabric remnants from the textile production in Egypt to produce their small bags and pouches. This is also the reason why hardly any of their pieces look like the other. They are not produced in series. Their lovingly crafted unique pieces are beguilingly beautiful and help to avoid waste. They always remind me to think twice when I want to throw something away again.

If you would like to know, how I met my husband and founded sandmade, please read my first blog post “How love became sandmade


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