women from Morocco have received wide acclaim for their rugs. They also used their amazing skills to weave traditional costumes, whose ample shapes are reminiscent of the draped garments of antiquity. Many garments, veils and capes reflect the identity of the different groups living on mountains and in valleys. They represent a way of life that is disappearing fast, as contacts with the outside world render it obsolete.
Some items of clothing are decorated with designs transferred from mother to daughter, but tradition did not prevent weavers from expressing their own creativity. The book shows a wide variety of designs allowing the reader to discover masterpieces of weaving and embroidery, but also of decoration with henna, a technique only known from Morocco.
This book is the first to offer a vast panorama of this exceptional heritage from the Mediterranean coast to the Sahara. Ethnologist Marie-Rose Rabaté and Frieda Sorber, an art historian and textile specialist have, between them researched Berber costume in and outside Morocco for 40 years.
As women in a female environment, their invaluable experience has allowed to widen existing knowledge, to collect rare examples, to witness the changing state of textile crafts and to pinpoint the recent apparition of fakes. In and outside Morocco many collectors have shared their collections for study, to help them to define a Berber style of decoration.
A wealth of objects was chosen to illustrate the texts, showing a kaleidoscope of colours and designs, including many details. They present an art that remained hidden for a long time, and that almost disappeared before it could claim its place among the world's cultures.
Text in English and French.