artisans' profiles

The Moroccan embroidery

Hamouda, 32 years old, makes embroidery in wool and raphia his own specialty. He does embroidery in his workshop located in Marrakech, chaff bags, hats in palm leaves and small boxes.

What is the story behind your products ?

I have learned to do this with a French artisan settled in the old Medina of Marrakech. He did embroidery not far from our small boutique, and I really liked his creations. He had a unique style, mixing both the Moroccan authenticity of the wool thread used and a decorative style (writing and pattern) that was more European.

At first, I would create pieces that were similar to my French friend’s, but today I have acquired my own style. I often use geometrical forms star-shaped included in squares and diamonds. Sometimes, I prefer floral patterns that are more requested by my customers. Most of my work are custom-made in order to create a 100% personalized item (name, text, love message…).

Which techniques do you use?

My work is mainly based on the traditional embroidery techniques. Each creation comes from a drawing put on a surface to embroider such as bags, hats and boxes in raphia. To give more vibrancy to my items, I reckon a diversity in the colors of the wool thread.

Where do you find your inspiration?

My first inspirations come from my experience with my French friend. He has been a huge inspiration to me and I am still grateful for that. He passed onto me his values of sharing and his unique savoir-faire.

After mastering the embroidery, I started to go to the weekly markets of Essaouira, a city known for its work of raphia, the main material of my creations. I have then been really surprise by the quantity and diversity of floral and geometrical patterns sewn on raphia bags.

Berber women, talented in this field, came from villages to create a Souk with diverse sections called “HAD DRAA”. This reunion of artisans occurs every Sunday, 20km from Essaouira. It is thanks to these meetings and inspiring visits that my imagination has evolved to create unique models fitting my customers’ taste.