FanSina, Arabic for Art of the Sinai, is a Bedouin-run social enterprise in Egypt that produces carefully embroidered and beaded handicrafts of exceptional quality and beauty. FanSina's producers are female artisans in the mountains and valleys around Mt. Sinai and the colorful, exquisite objects they produce embody and preserve a cultural tradition that has been rescued from near extinction. The patterns and motifs the Bedouin women use in their crafts were rediscovered and rescued from the oldest women of the ancient local Jabaleya tribe at a time when younger generations had turned away from producing traditional crafts and had begun buying mass-produced goods from Asia rather than make their own.
Though traditional in their inspiration, FanSina's products have been adapted to suit contemporary everyday use: workers produce shoulder bags, backpacks, cushions, make-up bags, curtains, coasters, quilts, among other things. These objects are more than just beautiful accessories—they have a social mission as well. FanSina's fundamental aim is as basic as it is pressing and important: to provide income to Bedouin women in a deeply conservative culture which offers them almost no avenues to contribute economically to their families' survival.
FanSina: Thread & Beads Shaping Lives