In Afikpo, the following tools can be identified: Ogu (hoe) used to dig clay: mma (small knife) and mgbisite (sharp edged tools derived from the hard back of the raffia palm
frond or bamboo) for scraping the wall of the pot; oba (calabash shell); okwukwo (roundish smooth stone) and ukwuagba (flat tool derived from the shell of a fruit) used for smoothening and burnishing; mkpisi (various sizes of pointed tools usually derived from broom sticks) designed for the application of incised decorations and ogboro aru or ohihiha (a damp dried leaf) used as a sponge in shaping the rim of the pot; Nkoite (a long stick or bamboo) used to carefully pull the wares from the fire pitch to the surroundings of the fire place.
Or try the wide-brimmed Tilley Raffia Hat ($95), made with 100 percent premium Madagascar raffia palm
for sun protection.
At almost every step another variety was shaking its distinctive foliage in my direction - elephant palm (so called because the base of the trunk resembles an elephant's foot), bottle palm, fishtail palm, sugar palm, raffia palm
and the tallipot palm, which grows for between 40 and 60 years, flowers and then dies.
Leaves of the raffia palm
are folded into tiles for roofs.
Third left, Aqua Bonsu wears another outfit of Mali muddoth and hand-painted Ugandan barkcloth with a skirt of Raffia palm
fibre designed by Makena for the 1998 Telecoms Conference in Johannesburg.