If you go to Cameroon and say you want to buy a “juju hat” and then point to one of these beautiful feathered babies, you will get a curious look from everyone around you or uncomfortable loud laughter. For some reason these hats have been well received in the West, but not their true name. The “Bamileke hat” or “Tyn hat” from the Bamileke tribes of Cameroon have come a long way.  Traditionally worn as a ceremonial headdress for festivities and tribal ceremonial dances, it has now morphed into a precious piece of  contemporary home decor, adorning stylish homes as wall hangings, table decorations or shown off on a pedestal. Some African words can be difficult to pronounce, I give you that, but this regal gem has such a simple easy-to-pronounce name (“Tyn“), that its beyond me why this name has not travelled together with the hat. I would love people to make the effort and call it by its given name. Does calling it a “juju hat” evoke more easily images of Tarzan and the usual stereo-typical image of Africa? Does it make it more “tribal”? Just curious, just putting it out there…




Just see what you can do with them: