Artisans Berber community

The women of Aït Hamza

Part of the Berber community

Our partner artisans in the village of Aït Hamza are true masters of high-quality weaving. Aït Hamza is a small town and rural commune located in the heart of the Atlas Mountains. In this community there is a select group of female artisans who are preserving an ancestral technique that is passed on from generation to generation. Hand weaving is a tradtional craft in the Berber community and is carried out exclusively by women. Until this day these artisans still handcraft unique pieces the way their ancestors did, using organic wool shorn from local sheep.

Working towards success

This group of six women is led by Yetto Afkir. Yetto is an experienced artisan who learned hand weaving techniques at a very young age, and has been striving ever since to establish a small structure where other artisans from her neighborhood can get together and weave their way to financial stability and freedom.

Fez Medina Weavers

The ancient Medina

Fez's ancient Medina is not only UNESCO world heritage but also a very lively place which stimulates all of your senses. Inside this fascinating maze you can find the atelier of Yahya: a place where a traditional way of horizontal loom weaving still exists today. Every item is made with close attention to detail and made by hand from start to finish.

Yahya’s atelier

The atelier was founded by Yahya himself who left his native town of Taounate more than ten years ago. Alongside three other artisans, including his nephew Mohamed, he creates high quality handwoven textiles out of local sheep wool or cotton. They focus on modern designs while respecting the traditional craftsmanship.

Artisan weaving in Fez
Weaver in Marrakesh

Tam weavers

Not just any cooperative

At the head of this cooperative we can find Abdessadek who founded it in 2009. Abdessadek founded the cooperative in hope of offering fellow artisans better and more humane working conditions. The workshop is located in a village right outside of Marrakesh and kept growing at a steady pace. Today it consists out of a group of 160 talented artisans.

Teamwork

All artisans specialize in a traditional way of weaving and use the finest cotton and wool. Abdessadek is from a family of weavers and understands all the ins and outs of using a traditional horizontal loom, a form of ancestral weaving. Besides offering a sustainable income and better working conditions, the cooperative wants to preserve this endangered craft.
Maintaining traditions, men take care of weaving the fabrics while the women are in charge of the meticulous details like embroidering tassels and macramé fringes.

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