(image by Sarah Charpentier)
I am incredibly excited about this new project which is literally hot off the looms and about to get its first public viewing.
Excited and a little nervous along with it!
(image Sarah Charpentier)
For some time now I have been playing with the idea of taking a visual reference as inspiration for a woven product.
My own obsession for shawls and scarves along with the joys of instagram have come together in this project where I am trying to use images that are to me both personal and quintessentially Moroccan, to create shawls that reflect something of that image.
Another strand of thought being, that after all the time we have spent in northern Morocco, I would like to work with people and organisations that are both mindful and fair in order to give a little bit back to the community that we are making our home.
There are so many “fairtrade” claims out there, especially when it comes to moroccan textiles, that I have always been very careful, to the point of reticence, about claiming it as a selling point, but with these shawls I can hold my head up high and confidently claim the Fair Trade banner!
Zohra is the mastermind behind the weaving studio at Darna – she is skilled, kind and patient and has been so supportive during this process (image Sarah Charpentier)
The weavers at Darna have been wonderful to work with – despite my linguistic ineptitude – and with a lot of help from friends ( a special thanks to my Tanjawi friend Rima needs to be made here!), we have shopped for thread, tried different wefts and warps and colours, and learned so much about the whole process. These first few shawls are definitely just the beginning!
Below are the shawls alongside the image that inspired them
I would love to know what you think.
The dimensions are a generous ( approximately 180 cm x 70 cm ) so that they can be worn as either a scarf or a shawl.
The ATAY shawl combines the silver tones of a vintage teapot along with the soft green of mint – and quite frankly nothing is more Moroccan than mint tea . . .
The BENI shawl is woven in the bold black and white of the berber Beni Ourain carpet which has become part of our interior design vocabulary – this scarf takes the bold black of the beni and combines it with a pewter for a little more bling.
The iconic blue of the Majorelle gardens in Marrakech was perfect for a shawl – we added a block of yellow and some stripes of green to complete the reference.
All the silk shawls above are woven by the women weavers at Association Darna.
One of my favourite places in Tangier is the Fondouk Chejra where you see the men at work on the looms creating beautiful woven textiles for everything from a traditional Djellaba to a sheer silk for a curtain, all in the most unassuming surroundings. Over the years the creativity in the work by Mohammed has often caught my eye – his colour combinations & use of natural threads are always a joy to see.
(image by Sarah Charpentier)
Below is the beginning of our BELDI range in cotton woven by M. Mohammed – his is a family business and the passing of time is made clear to me when I see his son, who I first met as a young boy running around the fondouk, now a young man getting involved in the family business and working with his father.
This scarf is a little different from the others as it is in cotton rather than silk and is woven by Mohammed.It is literally the result of me explaining my idea and showing him some images of our last olive harvest. The olive green cotton is interwoven with the rich purple of a ripe olive so it changes colour with the light – the thin stripes of gold are there to symbolise the olive oil that is pressed from the fruit.
All our TINT shawls and scarves are available in our TINT shop HERE