- The origin of Moroccan carpets date back to the Paleolithic era and were made by Berbers in North Africa.
The story of Moroccan rug weaving began with the Berbers, the tribal weavers from North Africa who lived nomadically in Morocco for centuries before the first Arab invasion in the 17th Century. Today many of Morocco's weaving groups descend from the Berber Tribes living as they would have centuries earlier throughout the mountainous pockets of Morocco's Middle Atlas.
Moroccan rugs are lively in pattern with designs made up of geometric motifs in endless variations. Each tribe has their own style of design and colour which is significant to daily life within their group. The patterns are influenced by ceramics, architectural decoration and tattoos traditionally worn by Berber women. Due to their rural isolation, Moroccan Berber tribes continue to preserve the techniques and protective symbolism of their ancestors. Handed down from mother to daughter, the designs are made to heal, protect, and tell a story. It could express the history of the tribe or the story of the weaver's life.
Although influenced by tribal designs, each weaver works at their loom without a design guide. They display in their designs a vision and directness of expression which gives them freshness and vitality. Each piece is as unique as the weaver who created it with originality and sincerity of design.
There is a strong connection between Moroccan art, rugs in particular, and 20th century western design. The simple geometric patterns of Moroccan carpets have long been used to enhance sophisticated modern furnishings and interiors. Appreciation of pile carpets from the Middle Atlas Mountains of Morocco began with the classical modern architects and designers such as Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier and Charles and Ray Eames. With the late nineties bringing about a renewed admiration for mid-century modernism, the Moroccan Berber carpets are widely sought after by modern interior designers and architects. With their hand spun wool and authentic indigenous character, these rugs have an organic quality and softness to them which cannot be matched by the machine made varieties from around the globe.