Friday, April 29, 2011

Market Baskets

The Terrapin Farms farm stand opens for the season today in Port Gamble, and the Kingston Farmer's Market kicks off tomorrow. If you don't have a market basket yet, come see Tango Zulu, your Kitsap fair trade store! Our market baskets range in size from tiny ones for the kids, up to our extra large market baskets which are 17"-19" in diameter. We also have some great looking rectangle shaped Bolga baskets that make excellent shopping baskets. Link

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Arbor Day in Port Gamble

Port Gamble will hold its first ever Arbor Day event this Friday, April 29th from 9am - 3pm, including a tree planting ceremony at 1:30pm at the Pavilion. The tree is in memory of a longtime worker in Port Gamble who passed away unexpectedly last year. It will be a nice, low key day in town. Check out the Port Gamble website for more information. Come on into town and celebration tree conservation, and stop by Tango Zulu to get a head start on Mother's Day shopping. Perhaps a small Bolga market basket with a couple of felted soaps inside? A felted wool oven mitt from Nepal, as seen here? Beautiful olive wood or ebony wood utensils? We also have lovely Nepalese clothing and handbags, luxurious natural olive butter and aloe butter, and a wide range of other gifts for your mother. Come plant a tree and do a little shopping at one of the only (perhaps THE only?) fair trade store in Kitsap.


Monday, April 25, 2011

New Zulu Baskets and Darfur Baskets

We have some beautiful new Zulu baskets in house, like the one pictured here. These striking African baskets are collector's items, and each one comes with a tag bearing the name of the weaver. We also have a new category on our website, Darfur Baskets. We begin carrying handwoven Darfur trivets a few weeks ago, and they sold so well we have decided to add Darfur Baskets of Hope. They are available in our Kitsap fair trade store now, and will be on the website by this Thursday. As with the Zulu baskets, each Darfur basket comes with a tag with the name of the weaver.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Tango Zulu One Year Anniversary

Tango Zulu Imports will celebrate its one year anniversary on May 8th. It's been an adventurous year, with both our Port Gamble gift shop and our e-commerce site growing by leaps and bounds. We'll give away cool gifts at the store both May 7th and 8th with any African basket purchase, and who knows...maybe some other random giveaways as well. We're pleased as can be to have been received so well in the North Kitsap community, and we expect to carry fair trade artisan products at reasonable prices for years to come. We carry handmade soap made from right here in Kitsap County, Zulu baskets from South Africa, felted wool kitchenware from Nepal, and hundreds of other items from dozens of countries. Our bestselling product to date is our Bolga market basket, and it will be the centerpiece of our new logo that we'll roll out soon. We appreciate all the support and are looking forward to our second year!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Handmade Sea Salt Soap

Have you ever tried a sea salt soap? Our handmade sea salt soaps have a bentonite clay base, which in conjunction with the sea salt helps draw toxins from the skin. They are extremely long lasting if allowed to drain between uses, and they lather well. Sea salt soap is good for oily skin.
Our eucalyptus sea salt soap and peppermint sea salt soap are both true natural soaps, with no synthetic ingredients. We also have a natural peppermint sea salt soap with French Green Clay added for more astringency, it's a great choice for acne-prone skin.

Our ginger citrus, plum spice, warm vanilla, and sweet coconut sea salt soaps contain small amounts of synthetic fragrances, but they are 98-99% natural. Our chocolate sea salt soap contains synthetic fragrance and also real dark chocolate.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

African Baskets with Lids

We have a nice collection of African baskets with lids, like the storage Bolga basket pictured here. They range in size from 9" in diameter all the way up to 17". Our lidded African baskets make great hat boxes, and are good for storing anything from photographs to clothing to sewing kits. If you're looking for a housewarming gift idea, consider packing one of our African baskets with lids with felted soap, sea salt soap, olive wood salad servers, felted wool pot holders, and other beautiful and practical household items. Also don't forget our Zulu baskets. They are primarily art pieces, but also make fine storage baskets.

Tango Zulu Imports is one of the few fair trade stores in the Kitsap or Olympic Peninsula area. We love seeing our customers is person, but if you can't come by our Port Gamble gift shop, visit us online at

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Handmade African Kitchenware

Our collection of handmade African kitchenware continues to expand. We have lots of beautiful olive wood salad servers and other handmade olive wood utensils from Kenya, most with cow bone handles. We also have solid olive wood pieces from Tunisia. All of our olive wood items are fair trade, high quality, practical, and beautiful. Additionally, we carry solid bone appetizer forks, spoons, and spreaders from Kenya, as well as bone-handled ebony salad serving sets.

Another kitchen and dining product we are proud to carry is the Tanzania fruit basket. It measures about 11" in diameter and is only $11.99. This handsome handwoven African basket is perfect for displaying fruits and rolls (I keep my garlic and onions in one at my home). For more African fruit baskets, check out our selection of Bolga baskets in the fruit and flower basket section.

Our handmade ceramic mugs from Tunisia, as pictured here, are now favorites at Tango Zulu. We have an assortment of Tunisian ceramic dishes and trays as well.

Friday, April 15, 2011

New African Baskets

We are pretty sure we have the best selection of African baskets in Kitsap! In addition to our Bolga baskets and Zulu baskets, we will soon add Darfur baskets from Sudan and Fulani baskets from various parts of North Africa. If you're on the Olympic Peninsula or Kitsap County and are in the market for great African baskets or other fair trade items, check us out.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Market Baskets

Market baskets like this one are our bestsellers. These Ghana baskets are characterized by a round shape and a single handle. They come in several sizes, with the most popular being our large market basket that measures about 15" in diameter and 8" deep. The large market basket, which is part of our Bolga basket collection, is a good size for shopping (thus the name), as well as garden harvesting, toting picnic items, or using as a laundry basket. As with all our Bolga baskets, this beautiful African basket is a fair trade item.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Outdoor Adventures in Port Gamble

As the weather improves there are more opportunities for outdoor adventures in Port Gamble and the rest of North Kitsap. Coming up this weekend, April 16th-17th, is the Lumberjack Endurance Run, a 100 mile ultra run on the trails just south of town. For more information on the Lumberjack ultra run and the many other trail runs in the area throughout the year, go to

Port Gamble will play host to Unleash the Beast on May 7th-8th. This event showcases mountain biking, trail running, kayaking, and other outdoor sports. It also has a great beer garden and other options for the less active!

In July, the Seattle Gran Fondo will hold a bicycle race through North Kitsap and the Olympic Peninsula.

These are the biggies coming up, but every day is an opportunity to get your bike or your feet out on a trail, or your paddles in the water. Olympic Outdoor Center in Port Gamble can rent you a kayak if you don't have your own, and Dauntless Bookstore will rent bicycles again this summer.

Oh, and our pure aloe butter and pure olive butter do a great job moisturizing, protecting, and healing adventurous hands and feet!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

African Basket Update

We continue to expand our inventory of African baskets. In addition to Bolga baskets from Ghana and Zulu baskets from South Africa, we also have Tanzanian baskets like the one pictured here. We already carry handwoven trivets from Darfur, and within the week will also have some gorgeous Darfur baskets. Look for us to add new styles of Bolga baskets this summer. These Ghana baskets are ideal farmer's market baskets and Easter baskets.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Aloe Butter

We just released a fresh batch of pure organic aloe butter. Aloe body butter is solid but easy to scoop at room temperature, and it melts on contact with the skin. Its texture is similar to many lip balms, in that is it solid and firm but easy to apply.

Aloe butter is a rich moisturizer and leaves a silky layer of protection on your skin, shielding it from dry air or wind. These properties make it an ideal lip balm. It also has healing and soothing properties, making it a great choice for irritated or itchy skin. Our aloe butter has no fragrance, colorants, preservatives, or other additives. It is pure white and has nearly no scent.

Aloe body butter has a melting temperature of around 85F, so keep in mind that it will liquefy in very warm temperatures. It will re-solidify as it cools and it won't be harmed by the process, but it can be messy of it melts and you're not prepared for it. We carry both a 4 ounce and 2 ounce size in reusable round tins. All natural body butters should be stored in a cool area away from direct sunlight. Any body butter we sell will have a shelf life of at least 6 months (depending on the butter, some last as long as two years.) The shelf life can be extended by refrigeration.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Felted Soap at Tango Zulu

Felted soap is beautiful and practical, and we think it would make a great Easter gift! Our felted soaps are made with the same high quality, cold-process soaps as our other handmade soaps. They soap is wrapped in sheep's wool which is gradually shrunken around it, creating the dense felt that acts a built-in washcloth. As you use your felted soap, the soap lathers up nicely through the wool, and the wool shrinks along with the soap. Wool is naturally antimicrobial so it resists getting stinky. As with all our handmade soap, we suggest that you allow your felted soap to drain between uses. Our juniper soap dish is perfect for the job!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Zulu Baskets and Bolga Baskets

We often tell customers that Bolga baskets from Ghana are the work horses among the African baskets we carry, while Zulu baskets from South Africa are the show horses. Our fair trade Bolga baskets are affordable and versatile, lending themselves to grocery shopping, garden harvesting, picnic duty, toy storage, fruit display, and a host of other tasks. However, if you purchase a handwoven Zulu basket, you are buying a collectible, heirloom quality work of art that is more likely to be displayed than used for every day tasks (although I do keep my seed packets in my Zulu basket at home.) Zulu baskets are more expensive than most African baskets, reflecting the many days of painstaking work and high level of craftsmanship it takes to create even a small one. We love each African basket we carry, from the most humble Ghana Bolga basket to the most magnificent Zulu basket.