WOVEN BAGS AND ARTIFACTS 2

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IN ADDITION TO PILED RUGS and flat weaves the Berbers of the Moroccan mountain ranges weave many artifacts for use in their homes. Among the most numerous are rectangular weavings which are folded in half and stitched and then become cushions and pillows. A small opening is left on a long side sufficient for various fillings to be inserted by hand. Bags of all sizes range from the tiny which contain precious items of jewellery, spices or dried fruit to the huge which are filled with grain.

Saddle bags for transport of goods by horse or donkey are common.

Finely woven bags are still made as dowry pieces.

Many items of clothing are woven for both every day, ceremonies and special occasions.

Please send any questions or enquiries to me at ldrowcroft@gmail.com

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS PILLOW / CUSHION. This originates from the Ait Youssi group of Berbers in the western Middle Atlas. The kilim front has a finely embroidered design and is further embellished with extensive use of sequins and artificial silk. The same colours are used for the finely striped reverse. Reference 2225. Size 48 X 38cms. 1ft.7in. x 1ft.3in. Euros 60.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS PILLOW / CUSHION. This originates from the Ait Youssi group of Berbers in the western Middle Atlas. The kilim front has a finely embroidered design and is further embellished with extensive use of sequins and artificial silk. The same colours are used for the finely striped reverse. Reference 2225. Size 48 X 38cms. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG, which can serve as a daytime cushion or night time pillow. The flat weave is extremely fine and the same wool used for the kilim has been used to overcast the sides, make the loops and fastening rope at the opening and also for the exceptional tassels. It originates from the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the Algerian border and is the work of the Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers. This little known area was thoroughly researched and the weavings documented by Alfred and Suznne Saulniers in their book "Ait bou Ichaouen" Reference 2665. Size 38 x 73 cms., 1ft. 3ins x 2ft. 7ins. Euros 180.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG, which can serve as a daytime cushion or night time pillow. The flat weave is extremely fine and the same wool used for the kilim has been used to overcast the sides, make the loops and fastening rope at the opening and also for the exceptional tassels. It originates from the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the Algerian border and is the work of the Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers. This little known area was thoroughly researched and the weavings documented by Alfred and Suznne Saulniers in their book "Ait bou Ichaouen" Reference 2665. Close up of the designs and loops.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT. The centre panel of this belt is not woven, but knitted. It originates from Berbers in Zagora which is the eastern tip of the High Atlas close to the border with Algeria. Curiously knitting is practised by Berber men from both countries in this area. The tassels, each representing multi-coloured flower heads, are intricate work. Belts are worn wrapped around the waist as many times as the length permits and are used for occasions of celebrations. Reference 2693. Size 260 x 10 cms., or 8ft. x 4ins. Euros 145.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT. The centre panel of this belt is not woven, but knitted. It originates from Berbers in Zagora which is the eastern tip of the High Atlas close to the border with Algeria. Curiously knitting is practised by Berber men from both countries in this area. The tassels, each representing multi-coloured flower heads, are intricate work. Belts are worn wrapped around the waist as many times as the length permits and are used for occasions of celebrations. Reference 2693. Size 260 x 10 cms., or 8ft. x 4ins. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER BAG / CUSHION. This is the typical shape of a multi purpose Berber bag which is often filled with old wool as stuffing and then used as a daytime cushion or a pillow at night. Virtually all Berber groups weave these but the examples such as this from the Zaer Berbers have the finest embroidered designs and also the finest knotting in the piled sections. Zaer is the most westerly part of the Middle Atlas mountains, close to the coastal city of Rabat. Kurt Rainer in his excellent book "Marokko" on plates 134 and 135 shows bags with similar construction and design on both front and back. This is a very old and collectable item. Reference 2608. Size 80 x 35cms. 2ft.8in. x 1ft.2in. Euros 150.

MOROCCAN BERBER BAG / CUSHION. This is the typical shape of a multi purpose Berber bag which is often filled with old wool as stuffing and then used as a daytime cushion or a pillow at night. Virtually all Berber groups weave these but the examples such as this from the Zaer Berbers have the finest embroidered designs and also the finest knotting in the piled sections. Zaer is the most westerly part of the Middle Atlas mountains, close to the coastal city of Rabat. Kurt Rainer in his excellent book "Marokko" on plates 134 and 135 shows bags with similar construction and design on both front and back. This is a very old and collectable item. Reference 2608. Size 80 x 35cms. 2ft.8in. x 1ft.2in. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS STORAGE BAG FACE. This is a rare, old example from the little-known Ait Bou Ichaouen Berbers in the eastern High Atlas close to the Algerian border. These pieces were often made by young girls and subsequently used by them to store precious items after marriage. According to original research by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers the Berbers weave what they can see and this grid design is a portrayal of fields of vegetation which are associated with prosperity. See pages 66-67 and Plate 84 with close up detail on page 66 of this design in the text book "Ait Bou Ichaouen". Reference 2647. 108 x 58cm. 3ft.6in. x 2ft. Euros 380

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS STORAGE BAG FACE. This is a rare, old example from the little-known Ait Bou Ichaouen Berbers in the eastern High Atlas close to the Algerian border. These pieces were often made by young girls and subsequently used by them to store precious items after marriage. According to original research by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers the Berbers weave what they can see and this grid design is a portrayal of fields of vegetation which are associated with prosperity. See pages 66-67 and Plate 84 with close up detail on page 66 of this design in the text book "Ait Bou Ichaouen". Reference 2647. 108 x 58cm. 3ft.6in. x 2ft. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN WOVEN BELT this intricately plaited belt is for a Berber man and would be worn on important occasions. It originates from the region of Boujad which is an area south of the Middle Atlas. See `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, pages 180 and 208 for information on ropes and belts. Reference 1948. 350 cms, 11ft 6ins, long. Euros 60.

MOROCCAN WOVEN BELT this intricately plaited belt is for a Berber man and would be worn on important occasions. It originates from the region of Boujad which is an area south of the Middle Atlas. See `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, pages 180 and 208 for information on ropes and belts. Reference 1948. 350 cms, 11ft 6ins, long. CLOSE UP.

VERY RARE BERBER HIGH ATLAS WEAVING. The structure, knotting and colors confirm this small squarish textile as being the work of the Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers of the eastern High Atlas mountains. The piece is made in two almost identical halves, carefully and accurately joined together. The center panel is flat woven kilim of undyed hand spun wool and goat hair. The piled designs around the perimeter are depictions of fields of crops, which denote the owner`s wealth. This is well documented in the excellent original research by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers which culminated in their masterful book "Ait bou Ichaouen", pages 66 and 67 refer as does color photo 89. What is not known is the use for this piece. It has the shape of a soffreh, or eating cloth, but none from these Berbers has been published. The two halves, when folded, form a bag. The kilim shows some bruising consistent with having heavy articles placed inside. A worthy and unique part of any collection. Reference 2660. Size 66 x 97 cms., 2ft. 2ins. x 3ft. 2ins. Euros 565.

VERY RARE BERBER HIGH ATLAS WEAVING. The structure, knotting and colors confirm this small squarish textile as being the work of the Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers of the eastern High Atlas mountains. The piece is made in two almost identical halves, carefully and accurately joined together. The center panel is flat woven kilim of undyed hand spun wool and goat hair. The piled designs around the perimeter are depictions of fields of crops, which denote the owner`s wealth. This is well documented in the excellent original research by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers which culminated in their masterful book "Ait bou Ichaouen", pages 66 and 67 refer as does color photo 89. What is not known is the use for this piece. It has the shape of a soffreh, or eating cloth, but none from these Berbers has been published. The two halves, when folded, form a bag. The kilim shows some bruising consistent with having heavy articles placed inside. A worthy and unique part of any collection. Reference 2660. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER WOMAN'S HEAD SCARF which originates from the remote region of Zagora south of the High Atlas, close to the border with Algeria. The triangle of fine black cotton has been carefully embroidered in wool with graceful floral designs and 3 bobbles representing flower heads have been added. The original edging and tassel work is intact. Reference 2581. Size 40 x 47cms. 1ft.4in. x 1ft.7in. Euros 40.

MOROCCAN BERBER WOMAN'S HEAD SCARF which originates from the remote region of Zagora south of the High Atlas, close to the border with Algeria. The triangle of fine black cotton has been carefully embroidered in wool with graceful floral designs and 3 bobbles representing flower heads have been added. The original edging and tassel work is intact. Reference 2581. Size 40 x 47cms. 1ft.4in. x 1ft.7in. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER DECORATIVE PIECE which would be worn by a Berber woman. It hangs over the front of a tunic and is hung by a cord which loops over the head. The vibrant multi coloured background cloth is embellished with rows of mercerised cotton loops and tassels. It is the work of Berbers of the High Atlas and a similar piece is being worn by a Berber woman in a colour plate on page 26 of the textbook "Tazenacht". Reference 2696. Size 41 x 37 cms., or 16 x 14 ins. Euros 85.

MOROCCAN BERBER DECORATIVE PIECE which would be worn by a Berber woman. It hangs over the front of a tunic and is hung by a cord which loops over the head. The vibrant multi coloured background cloth is embellished with rows of mercerised cotton loops and tassels. It is the work of Berbers of the High Atlas and a similar piece is being worn by a Berber woman in a colour plate on page 26 of the textbook "Tazenacht". Reference 2696. Size 41 x 37 cms., or 16 x 14 ins. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS PILLOW / CUSHION This is among the oldest, finest and most beautifully embroidered pillow I have encountered in all my travels in Morocco. The front decoration design is exceptional and the striped back is consistent of the work of the Beni M'guild Berber group in the western Middle Atlas. It will be a valuable part of any collection. Reference 2573. Size 98 x 40cms. 3ft.3in. x 1ft.4in. Euros 365.

MOROCCAN BERBER MIDDLE ATLAS PILLOW / CUSHION This is among the oldest, finest and most beautifully embroidered pillow I have encountered in all my travels in Morocco. The front decoration design is exceptional and the striped back is consistent of the work of the Beni M'guild Berber group in the western Middle Atlas. It will be a valuable part of any collection. Reference 2573. Size 98 x 40cms. 3ft.3in. x 1ft.4in. REVERSE.

FINDING old bags and trappings in good condition gets harder every trip. This old Berber rug dealer in a village on the way to Tazenacht in the High Atlas hangs his stock outside. Inside are piles of old rugs and bags.

WHERE to start? Over 200 old bags await inspection. It is a long and very dusty procedure. Only one bag was good enough to buy. You cannot imagine how long it takes to get to the final price of just one piece.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS BAG FACE The rugs and textiles of the little known area of the eastern High Atlas close to the border with Algeria were only discovered around 1997. The early temptation was to class them all as coming from Talsint, the major town. Wonderful original research resulting in the publication of the text book "Ait Bou Ichaouen" by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers gives huge insight into the sub tribes and weavings. This piece is the front of a large sack which would probably have contained the personal effects of a bride on the occasion of her wedding. Female fertility symbols have been used in the design. The foundation is flat weave kilim and the motifs are in hand knotted pile. A similar piece is shown on page 82 of the book. Reference 2559. Size 122 x 49cms. 4ft. x 1ft.7in. Euros 155.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS BAG FACE The rugs and textiles of the little known area of the eastern High Atlas close to the border with Algeria were only discovered around 1997. The early temptation was to class them all as coming from Talsint, the major town. Wonderful original research resulting in the publication of the text book "Ait Bou Ichaouen" by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers gives huge insight into the sub tribes and weavings. This piece is the front of a large sack which would probably have contained the personal effects of a bride on the occasion of her wedding. Female fertility symbols have been used in the design. The foundation is flat weave kilim and the motifs are in hand knotted pile. A similar piece is shown on page 82 of the book. Reference 2559. Size 122 x 49cms. 4ft. x 1ft.7in. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS STORAGE BAG FACE. This is a very old square face of a tent bag knows as an "aalau". According to original excellent research by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers published in their book "Ait Bou Ichaouen" Berber designs are influenced by what the weaver sees around her and this piled bag face clearly shows a portrayal of 4 tall trees. Several examples and extensive information on this type of weave can be seen on pages 82-86. This is a collector's item. Reference 2648. Size 66 x 68cms. 2ft.2in. x 2ft.3in. Euros 370.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS STORAGE BAG FACE. This is a very old square face of a tent bag knows as an "aalau". According to original excellent research by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers published in their book "Ait Bou Ichaouen" Berber designs are influenced by what the weaver sees around her and this piled bag face clearly shows a portrayal of 4 tall trees. Several examples and extensive information on this type of weave can be seen on pages 82-86. This is a collector's item. Reference 2648. Size 66 x 68cms. 2ft.2in. x 2ft.3in. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG, which can serve as a daytime cushion or night time pillow. The flat weave is extremely fine and the same wool used for the kilim has been used to overcast the sides, make the loops and fastening rope at the opening and also for the exceptional tassels. It originates from the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the Algerian border and is the work of the Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers. This little known area was thoroughly researched and the weavings documented by Alfred and Suznne Saulniers in their book "Ait bou Ichaouen" Reference 2666. Size 38 x 73 cms., 1ft. 3ins x 2ft. 7ins. Euros 180.

MOROCCAN BERBER HIGH ATLAS TENT BAG, which can serve as a daytime cushion or night time pillow. The flat weave is extremely fine and the same wool used for the kilim has been used to overcast the sides, make the loops and fastening rope at the opening and also for the exceptional tassels. It originates from the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the Algerian border and is the work of the Ait bou Ichaouen Berbers. This little known area was thoroughly researched and the weavings documented by Alfred and Suznne Saulniers in their book "Ait bou Ichaouen" Reference 2666. Close up of the designs and loops.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT. A precious piece woven entirely of silk. Belts for ceremonial and special occasions use are worn wrapped around the waist once, or several times, according to length. This fine example is from the High Atlas south of Marrakech. It is quite usual for some silk to be used in the design but to be completely woven in silk is rare. Reference 2694. Size is 166 cms., or 5ft. 6ins. long. Euros 125.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT. A precious piece woven entirely of silk. Belts for ceremonial and special occasions use are worn wrapped around the waist once, or several times, according to length. This fine example is from the High Atlas south of Marrakech. It is quite usual for some silk to be used in the design but to be completely woven in silk is rare. Reference 2694. Size is 166 cms., or 5ft. 6ins. long. Euros 125.

MOROCCAN BERBER BAG / CUSHION. This is the typical shape of a multi purpose Berber bag which is often filled with old wool as stuffing and then used as a daytime cushion or a pillow at night. Virtually all Berber groups weave these but the examples such as this from the Zaer Berbers have the finest embroidered designs and also the finest knotting in the piled sections. The white design in this bag is cotton which is often used as it discolours less than white wool in a smoky atmosphere. Zaer is the most westerly part of the Middle Atlas mountains, close to the coastal city of Rabat. Kurt Rainer in his excellent book "Marokko" on plates 134 and 135 shows bags with similar construction and design on both front and back. This is a very old and collectable item. Reference 2609. Size 80 x 38cms. 2ft.8in. x 1ft.4in. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN BERBER BAG / CUSHION. This is the typical shape of a multi purpose Berber bag which is often filled with old wool as stuffing and then used as a daytime cushion or a pillow at night. Virtually all Berber groups weave these but the examples such as this from the Zaer Berbers have the finest embroidered designs and also the finest knotting in the piled sections. The white design in this bag is cotton which is often used as it discolours less than white wool in a smoky atmosphere. Zaer is the most westerly part of the Middle Atlas mountains, close to the coastal city of Rabat. Kurt Rainer in his excellent book "Marokko" on plates 134 and 135 shows bags with similar construction and design on both front and back. This is a very old and collectable item. Reference 2609. Size 80 x 38cms. 2ft.8in. x 1ft.4in. Euros 115.

MOROCCAN HIGH ATLAS BERBER TENT BAG / PILLOW It was only around 1997 that the weaving of the various Berber groups who make up the Ait Bou Ichaouen were discovered. This remote region lies close to the Algerian border. We must be grateful to Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers whose outstanding field research resulted in their text book. This particular piece is of a single flat woven kilim with a lattice design of knots. It has been folded and joined and an opening left at one side and was in use as a pillow. Plate 10 shows a square storage sack and plate 76 shows a large kilim again with piled design which have similar colours and construction and are clearly related. Reference 2562. Size 44 x 54cms. 1ft.5in. x 1ft.9in. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN HIGH ATLAS BERBER TENT BAG / PILLOW It was only around 1997 that the weaving of the various Berber groups who make up the Ait Bou Ichaouen were discovered. This remote region lies close to the Algerian border. We must be grateful to Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers whose outstanding field research resulted in their text book. This particular piece is of a single flat woven kilim with a lattice design of knots. It has been folded and joined and an opening left at one side and was in use as a pillow. Plate 10 shows a square storage sack and plate 76 shows a large kilim again with piled design which have similar colours and construction and are clearly related. Reference 2562. Size 44 x 54cms. 1ft.5in. x 1ft.9in. Euros 110.

MOROCCAN MIDDLE ATLAS BERBER PILLOW / CUSHION Beautifully embroidered small bags serve as night time pillows and day time cushions throughout Moroccan rural areas, especially the Middle Atlas region of Zeymour, where this old piece was woven. The white design is in cotton which resists discolouration in smokey atmospheres. The lines of designs representing flower heads appear to be of silk. It is old and in excellent condition. The design on the reverse is equally attractive. Reference 2558. Size 41 x 36cms. 1ft.4in. x 1ft.2in. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN MIDDLE ATLAS BERBER PILLOW / CUSHION Beautifully embroidered small bags serve as night time pillows and day time cushions throughout Moroccan rural areas, especially the Middle Atlas region of Zeymour, where this old piece was woven. The white design is in cotton which resists discolouration in smokey atmospheres. The lines of designs representing flower heads appear to be of silk. It is old and in excellent condition. The design on the reverse is equally attractive. Reference 2558. Size 41 x 36cms. 1ft.4in. x 1ft.2in. Euros 85.