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African Festival Yokohama 2011- Our shop

I did something very interesting over the week end. I had a booth selling various goods from Africa at the African Festival Yokohama 2011. The festival is organized every year by Afrikakiko (a shop that sells goods from Africa in Japan), various African embassies and the Japanese ministry of foreign affairs.

My husband and I rented a small booth for three days and we tried to sell arts that we had bought at home over the years but also clothes and accessories.

The festival lasted 3 days. During all this time, we met several people, mainly Japanese people who love Africa or are just curious about the continent. Many Japanese people who lived in Senegal for work,  studies or play came to talk to us (sometimes in Wolof, our mother's tongue). We also had the chance to chat with other foreigners who had booths just like us. In short, we did a little networking.

During the festival, I had the chance to check some other booths. Some were selling the same kind of stuff we had, some other were completely different. I wanted to do some shopping as well, but lately I decided to save a bit and shop less. I did manage to score some babouche and bangles from the Moroccan booth. I also watch some interesting performances such as Tanzanian dance (done by Japanese ladies) and a fashion show by a Senegalese designer based in Japan. Unfortunately, it was forbidden to take pictures of the performances. 

The entire experience was interesting. I got so many ideas concerning what goods to sell in the future from other booths that my head is spinning. I learned that selling things is not very easy. It also confirmed 2 things about myself that I knew before: I do not have the patience to sell and I am not really a people's person. I like to have ideas and design (even though I am not making it a job). If I had a real shop, you will likely find me in the back making sure that everything is working properly, then being the face of the shop, greeting and talking to people (my hubby is better at it).
Nevertheless, to have a booming business I need not only to get the patience to sell, but put myself out there by networking more. And I intend to do just that, starting from now....

Pictures of our booth:

                                                                      Sand Paintings

                                                                      Accessory Wall

                                                                  Clothes and Sculptures

                                                             Clothes, table cloth, bags...
Ps: you can check our online blog/shop at


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