BraceletNational Museums of Kenya
Meet the Pokot
The Pokot are a sub-community of the Kalenjin, known for their colorful beadwork and headdresses. Here we explore some of the Pokots' traditional decorative attire.
Young Pokot Man by Joy AdamsonNational Museums of Kenya
This is the headdress of a young Pokot man about to undergo circumcision. The headdress is in the first phase of building up a chignon. As the young man's status progresses, so too does his headdress.
Headdress for circumcised menNational Museums of Kenya
One month after circumcision, circumcised boys would progress to wearing this a thin headdress, made from beads and fiber from the sokotwo tree. It would be worn on the head, with strings in front.
Young Pokot warrior by Joy AdamsonNational Museums of Kenya
This young Pokot warrior is pictured shortly after achieving adult status. He is wearing a headdress made of ostrich feather and black fur to denote his status.
Pokot Married Woman by Joy AdamsonNational Museums of Kenya
This is a Pokot married woman dressed with several strands of beaded necklaces and metallic earrings.
Her earrings are attached by a beaded string to hair-clips, and ornamented with bells, which denote her status and number of children.
HeadbandNational Museums of Kenya
This is a headband worn by women of all ages for beauty. It is made of threads, beads, shells and aluminium coils.
Skin capeNational Museums of Kenya
This leopard skin cape would have been used by the groom during a wedding, for jumping dances.
CombNational Museums of Kenya
This is a small pronged wire comb covered with beautifully woven wire. The ends are covered with strands of coiled wire, which holds the ostrich feather. It was used for hair dressing and worn on the head as an ornament by young men who would wear a mud-pack hair-do.
HeaddressNational Museums of Kenya
This ceremonial headdress would have been worn by men during traditional ceremonies.
Learn about the communities of Kenya