In the Bolgatanga region of Ghana, artisans weave baskets by hand using a thick, tough elephant grass. The Bolga baskets, which are a classic icon of African craftsmanship, often hold up to daily use for years. Bolgatanga is known as the crafts center of Northern Ghana; the region and its surrounding villages are some of the largest producers of leatherworks and straw baskets in the country. A classic icon of African craftsmanship, Bolga baskets are known for their durability, unique patterns, and vibrant colors. Purchases of these baskets have allowed many weavers in the Bolgatanga region to attain a sustainable way of living.
Basket weaving in the Upper East Region serves as an example of the craft skills of women in the North, and each colorful basket can take up to a week to finish. The process to create these baskets begins by harvesting tall elephant grass from local fields. The straw is then bundled together and dipped in boiling water and natural dye — resulting in its vibrant color. The weavers intricately select the pieces of grass for each part of the basket and weave from the bottom to the top. Based on the design, in the last step, a tightly wrapped leather handle will be added to finish the piece.