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Kenya native brings flair from home to Waltham's Moody Street area

Posted by Jaclyn Reiss  March 20, 2013 04:40 PM

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mizizidesign.com

Some paintings from Kenya hang in Mizizi Design, a store new to Waltham that specializes in African crafts.

Waltham's vibrant Moody Street area now has one more shop adding to its diverse mix.

Anthony Sankale, a native of Kenya, has recently opened a store selling hand-crafted products from his home country. The shop, Mizizi Design, is located at 28 Crescent St., located off Moody Street.

And anyone looking to learn more about the country can find cultural anecdotes behind each craft, painting, and sweatshirt in the shop.

"I know specifically what I’m selling, where it came from, and the story behind it," Sankale said.

Sankale said he decided to open his store in Waltham specifically because of its reputation for an eclectic mix of stores, restaurants, and people.

"Moody Street is very busy especially in the summer - there's always foot traffic," he said. "Waltham is very diverse. There's a market for the product in Waltham, and it's close to Boston and the commuter rail."

And as a Kenyan native himself, Sankale said the items he sells - ranging from jewelry to handbags to clothing to artwork to shoes - helps those he left back home. He only buys products that were hand-made by people in Kenya, and most of the jewelry was designed by a group of tribal women who sell their creations at a local African market.

"This is what these people depend on," Sankale said, noting that he's hoping to start donating 5 or 10 percent of his profits back to Kenya as his store grows. "There are people who need this kind of help. I'm from Kenya. I know exactly how it is."

For more information about Mizizi Design and the store's hours, visit the shop's website.

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Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com

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