Dathonga was born from the African concept of honouring one’s past. Founded by Marcia Nangy, it was created in an effort to blend modern designs with traditional artisan knowledge. The goal of Dathonga is to update Mozambican traditional crafts while preserving the skills and knowledge behind them.
Using the bounty of the African wilds as inspiration, extending from coastal landscapes to African savannah, Dathonga creates truly unique and locally sourced products with one eye on style and comfort and the other on preserving the landscapes where the materials are harvested.
The heart of Dathonga Designs is that of a woman. It is the story of endurance, love, rebirth and freedom told through striking clashes of color and carefully accented raw woods and organic fibers.
Marcia is involved in all aspects of product development, from design to production process, supervising and ensuring the quality of all Dathonga Design branded products.
We are elevating traditional techniques, developing the use of local resources, creating alternative income through the wisdom of the community, supporting the preservation of rural ecosystems and making sure that the benefits from these resources are shared equally among the people using them for commercial use.
Handmade from the finest natural woods and fibers sourced from the provinces of Gaza and Inhambane using environmentally sustainable methods, our collection supports more than just people.
The world moves at a faster pace than ever before, but here in Mozambique time has been kind. Our people still know how to work with nature, still remember how to use wood and manipulate fibers into beautiful and useful creations.
Rural women here are resilient and their skills in manipulating local materials are exceptional. Taking only what the tree or plant can withstand, these women are experts at harvesting organic raw material. They may have very little, but they are rich in smiles and gifted with skills that take years to master.
The goals of Dathonga is both to support rural women and honor their time-honed skills, but also to give the forests a value that protects them for future generations. By purchasing a unique Dathonga item for your home, you’re choosing to support a rural artisan woman and preserve the African wild. You are also supporting a time-honored way of life for Mozambican families living in some of the most rural conditions in the country.
A native of Inhambane, the “Land of Good People”, Marcia Nangy was raised by her seamstress mother who nurtured her creative tendencies and her mechanic father who taught her to work hard and respect nature.
She is a mother of three, a business-owner, a designer, and has consulted on projects in the craft sector for the UNDP, DANIDA, WWF and the Mozambican government. She finds inspiration for Dathonga Designs in all aspects of nature and human interaction. In the wrinkled faces of her elders to the natural geometric patterns found in nature, from the shells washed ashore on her morning walks to vintage furniture abandoned on the road, anything and everything seen through the eye of an artist can be used to create something useful and pleasing.
Marcia’s natural curiosity and love of nature combined with her experience in rural development caused her to gravitate toward the creation of an all-natural collection. Whether she is gardening or playing with her children, actively designing new products or training rural women, Marcia is always creating, always learning and always putting her touch on the world.
She hopes you enjoy the designs she has created and welcomes feedback and comments.
Dina Marcia Nangy