Authentic, handwoven Berber rugs are vastly different from the mass-produced Berber carpets found in the West. Owning a genuine Beni Ourain rug is essentially owning a bit of history and a work of art, as well as an all-around quality product.
These carpets take their name from the Berber tribe of Northern Africa. They are typically imported from Morocco and other countries in the region. The area where the indigenous people live determines the thickness and weight of these rugs. Those living in plains, where weather is mild, typically create light weight carpets with a lower pile and a finer weave than those made by weavers living in mountains, where cold weather is commonplace.
The Moroccan rugs woven by Berber tribeswomen are still designed primarily from sheep’s wool, camel hair and additional items as needed. The latter may include silk or hair from goats. The carpets are mainly found in various shades of white, tan and ivory, or light shades of brown with black accents. The black in some Berber rugs is from animals that are still native to the area, such as black goats. However, regardless of the material’s source, all colors in a Beni Ourain rug correspond to colors in nature. Due to the fact that they are handwoven, no two rugs of this type are exactly alike, and therefore each has its own distinct beauty.
Because the indigenous tribes were primarily isolated in their separate rural or mountainous regions, the symbolism woven into each rug relates exclusively to their own families and ancestors. Specific weaving methods are passed down from one generation to the next among the women in the family. Special designs tell the story of each tribe, and often showcase the weaver’s life as well. Understanding the designs, construction and background of Berber carpets typically increases the owner’s appreciation of these world-renowned creations.
Benefits and Uses
Because of their massive appeal and popularity on the current home interiors market, it is not uncommon to see a beautiful rug of this type used as a chair covering, blanket, traditional rug or even wall art. This is because Berber rugs offer both decorative and practical features, and are a great choice for anyone searching for an item to enhance the overall decor of a home or office. In addition, they lend themselves well to virtually any interior design, as their simple patterns and beautiful, neutral colors blend well in any room where they are placed.
Shopping for a Beni Ourain Rug
When shopping for a rug of this type, it is important to do business with a reputable dealer. Handmade Moroccan rugs can be authenticated, and this is essential if one is to ensure that a genuine rug is being purchased. It is also wise to compare several patterns and colors before making a final decision.
Ultimately, the Moroccan Berber rug is an ideal choice for any homeowner looking for a carpet that offers practical benefits and aesthetic appeal. Regardless of one’s personal taste, no consumer can go wrong adding a lovely, handcrafted Berber rug to his or her dwelling.