Calabash man

This is Albert Jonas of Irishtown. He uses Calabash to make beautiful jewelry and other crafts. He was at Devon House Craft Fair today and I was taken with his work. He also showed me the tools he made with pieces of wood, metal and leather, used to carve the wood. Calabash (lagneraia sacraria) is a vine that produces squash-like fruit, and the gourd is used for arts and crafts and instruments. It is a popular medium here, with artisans carving intricate designs into the delicate, wood-like material.

According to Mr. Jonas, calabash gourds was traditionally used for cutlery, scoops, ladles and containers, as well as fish net floats, musical instruments, and ornamental purposes. Calabash apparently originated in Africa and the tree can grow up to 30 feet in height.

6 thoughts on “Calabash man

  1. …what kind of work you do with CUSO while in Jamaica? I have been researching organizations that do paid placements at the moment. I been wanting to go back to Jamaica as I was there in April volunteering. Please provide some suggestions and contact information if you can. Glad you are enjoying your experience.

    • Hello, I am a communications advisor for Youth Opportunities Unlimited, a non-profit that works with inner-city youth, mainly through mentoring. You can research opportunities at I am pretty sure they are recruiting right now for Jamaica. You can also call the local office at 876-929-8774 for more information. Thanks for reading!

  2. Very talented. I would like to attend one of those fairs. I have a leather satchel (bag) that I would like to have replicated. If you know of anyone please let me know. Thank you.

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