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You can’t imagine the Atlas mountains without the shepherds and their herds of sheep. Sheep are a very important source of income to the local communities. So naturally this is where the journey of our products starts.

Wool of locally bred sheep

Sheep from the High Atlas have long fur due to the very cold winters up there. These long wool fibres are less likely to unravel or fluff compared to short wool fibres. We buy the wool we use in our rugs, plaids and cushions from local shepherds. Next, the wool is washed in the river. Not only does that save a lot of tap water, river water is also less hard than tap water and therefore better for the wool. After the washing is done, the women remove the twigs and thistles that the sheep have collected in their furs over the past years.

Het proces 1
Het proces 2

Hand spinning & plant dyeing

The women spin the wool into thread with their hands. They use a spindle to do so. This allows them to spin a thick thread for knotting carpets or a thin thread for weaving cushions and plaids. After being spun, the wool is dyed with minerals, plants, leaves, roots and bolsters. We use soda to degrease the wool and alum to stain the wool. We then heat the treated wool together with plants. As a result we get these rich earthy and natural tones. No chemicals are used in the process. That is why there is 0 impact on the environment and the health of the women. Colouring wool with plants, leaves and roots has always been a local tradition. But due to the advent of synthetic dyes, there are only few women left who still practice this artisan craft.

Making the rugs & cushions

Eventually the women start the process of knotting and weaving. It takes about 1 month to knot 1 carpet. Every square meter counts around 25.000 knots. The women work on their own rug from start to finish. Cushions are woven on a loom. This takes up to 2 or 3 weeks. When the design is ready, the rug is cut loose and finalised.

At last, the fabrics are left outside to dry in the fresh mountain air, after a thorough rinse with river water. We transport the products in re-usable bags to Belgium by road.

Het proces 3