Berber Moroccan rugs are beautiful and unique pieces of art that have been crafted by Berber tribes in Morocco for centuries. These rugs are made of wool and have a distinct style that sets them apart from other types of rugs. They are characterized by their simple yet intricate designs, which are often geometric in nature. In this blog, we will take a closer look at Berber Moroccan rugs, their history, styles, materials, and how they are made.
History of Berber Moroccan Rugs:
Berber Moroccan rugs have a long and rich history that dates back to ancient times. The Berber tribes in Morocco have been weaving rugs for generations, and these rugs were originally used for practical purposes such as warmth and insulation in the harsh desert climate. Over time, the Berber tribes began to incorporate their unique cultural and artistic traditions into their rug-making, resulting in the beautiful and intricate designs that we see today.
One of the most distinctive features of Berber Moroccan rugs is their use of symbols and motifs, which have been passed down through generations of weavers. These symbols and motifs have deep cultural and religious significance, and often reflect the natural world and the tribe's connection to it.
Styles of Berber Moroccan Rugs:
There are many different styles of Berber Moroccan rugs, each with its unique design and color palette. Some of the most popular styles include:
Beni Ourain: Beni Ourain rugs are perhaps the most well-known style of Berber Moroccan rugs. They are made by the Beni Ourain tribe in the Atlas Mountains and are characterized by their white or cream-colored background and simple black geometric designs.
Azilal: Azilal rugs are made by the Azilal tribe in the High Atlas Mountains. They are known for their bright, bold colors and abstract designs.
Boucherouite: Boucherouite rugs are made from recycled materials such as cotton, wool, and fabric scraps. They are often brightly colored and feature a patchwork design.
Boujad: Boujad rugs are made by the Boujad tribe in the Haouz region of Morocco. They are known for their vibrant colors and intricate designs, which often feature diamond and checkerboard patterns.
Materials Used in Berber Moroccan Rugs:
Berber Moroccan rugs are traditionally made from wool, which is shorn from the sheep raised by the Berber tribes. The wool is then cleaned, spun, and dyed using natural dyes made from plants and other organic materials. The use of natural dyes is an important part of the Berber rug-making tradition, as it reflects the tribe's connection to the natural world.
In addition to wool, some Berber Moroccan rugs also incorporate other materials such as cotton and silk. These materials are often used to add texture and depth to the rugs, and can also be used to create intricate patterns and designs.
How Berber Moroccan Rugs are Made:
The process of making a Berber Moroccan rug is a time-consuming and labor-intensive process that involves several steps. The first step is to shear the wool from the sheep and clean it thoroughly. The wool is then spun into yarn using a traditional spindle or spinning wheel.
Once the yarn has been spun, it is dyed using natural dyes made from plants and other organic materials. The dyeing process is a delicate and time-consuming process, as the weaver must carefully monitor the temperature and duration of the dye bath to ensure that the color is even and consistent.
Once the yarn has been dyed, it is woven into a rug using a traditional loom. Berber Moroccan rugs are woven using a technique called the "weft-faced plain weave," which creates a dense, sturdy fabric that is perfect for use as a rug.