Loading... Please wait...


The Individuality of The Moroccan Berber Rug

Posted by

Beni Ourain rugs, also called Moroccan Berber rugs, are named after the Beni Ourain people that comprises 17 Berber tribes. Many of these clans still raise sheep in the Atlas Mountains. Since they live in higher elevations, the sheep produce exceptionally graded wool. Tribal members, mostly female, have been using this natural product to create coverings for thousands of years. Originally, these were used as functional bedspreads or blankets to keep people warm in the harsh mountain climate.

Every Moroccan tribe had favorite color schemes. To achieve those, members incorporated natural dyes, such as almond leaves, cochineal, henna, iron sulfate and indigo. Natural dyes were solely used until the end of the 20th century. Authentic mid-century and vintage Beni Ourain coverings add modest sophistication to any decor. That’s why top interior decorators love incorporating them into floor and wall design schemes.

The weavers often add style elements inspired by personal experiences. Traditionally, Moroccan Berber designs referenced aspects of everyday life and natural events. These include birth, nature, rural life, fertility, spirituality and beliefs. Some even believed that the coverings could protect from evil spirits and therefore added lucky charms to attract prosperity and good luck.

You can recognize traditional Beni Ourain creations by their mostly geometric brown or black lines that form diamond and abstract shapes. These appear on a whitish or cream colored background. Most of these handwoven rugs don’t have borders. Some might have fringes on one end or on two sides, but it’s not required.

Beni Ourain rugs are knotted in a precise manner, and the pile varies from shallow to deep. Their designs might include characters from the region’s ancient alphabet, talisman symbols or geometric patterns evocative of Navajo rug patterns. Because vintage Berber rugs combine neutral colors and timeless abstract designs, they easily accentuate today’s contemporary styles.

Since the authentic Beni Ourain coverings aren't mass produced, no two are alike. Plus, the durability of these pieces makes them timeless additions to any home. You can easily tell real Moroccan Berber rugs apart from imitation products by their size, texture and design. Older rugs feel softer and don't measure more than 7 feet in width.

However, Berber tribes still produce unique, handmade Moroccan rugs by following the ancient techniques. Each genuine Berber rug exhibits a distinct design and pattern that no weaver will duplicate. Every weaver determines the style as the rug progresses, without following a set pattern. It can take years to complete just one.

Plants and berries that grow abundantly in the Atlas Mountains provide the natural dyes that add vibrant shades to a specific creation. The resulting colors include blues, greens, oranges, purples, reds and yellows. These contrast wonderfully with the black and natural wool that comes from regional goats and sheep.

Regardless of age, a genuine Moroccan rug is a work of art that will add beauty to your surroundings for a lifetime. When cared for properly, the wool and colors will retain their qualities for generations to come.

Reindeer Hides - A Luxury Interior Accent Piece

Have you been searching for the perfect luxury accent piece for your interior or exterior living space? Reindeer hides are the latest in home decor trends. The fur offers us rich blends of deep natural browns, tans and creamy white colors that bring texture and warmth to any color scheme. Reindeer skin serves as a [...]

Read More »

Sheepskin Rugs are Exciting and Traditional

Tradition is a concept that many homeowners turn to when it comes to deciding how to decorate their home. They want a home that speaks of wonderful past traditions. This is why so many people find it useful to aim for a home that is full of traditional elegance and beauty. A well decorated home [...]

Read More »

The Unique Rug That Will Last for Years

Do you want a unique handwoven rug that will last for years? Browse one of your options in one of these breathtaking Beni Ourain rugs; they are tribal floor coverings that originated in North Africa's magnificent Atlas Mountains. They're nothing new at all. People in that region have been making and relying on them for [...]

Read More »

Reindeer Rugs Are Warm and Luxurious

Animal hide rugs continue to gain popularity. Many consumers are growing tired of synthetic interior design elements that simply don't provide that natural element. If you're someone who is fed up with floor coverings that just don't deliver in the quality department, it may be the ideal time for you to think outside the box. [...]

Read More »

Cowhide Rugs Are Attractive

It can be a challenge to find anything that stands out on this planet. So many things have been done before. Rare things are truly hard to come across. That's the reason shopping for a distinctive, unique and one-of-a-kind floor covering can at times feel like such an impossible and fruitless task. If you're serious [...]

Read More »

Interior Trend Here to Stay: Moroccan Berber and Beni Ourain Rugs

Handwoven rugs are growing in popularity amongst interior decorators and designers. Each rug acts as a unique accent piece, with no two rugs being exactly the same. This diversity in appearance sets these rugs a part from mass produced rugs. Moroccan Berber rugs and Beni Ourain rugs are amongst the most chic designs. Both styles [...]

Read More »

How to Care for Your Cowhide Rug

One of the questions we're often asked at City Cows is 'do I need to do anything special to clean and care for my cowhide rug?' I thought I'd share some of the tips and tricks I've picked up over the years.When properly cared for, cowhide rugs can last for years. Cowhide rugs only require a little regular maintenance, but [...]

Read More »

How To Decide What Type Of Rug To Buy

Decorating a home can feel intimidating. Many people aren't entirely sure where to start. Looking at the space as an organic whole can be very helpful. Each area of the home should be planned out and used in order to make the person living there feel comfortable as they go from room to room. One [...]

Read More »

Transform Your Space With Your Cowhide Rug

A cowhide rug can be a wonderful way to amp up an otherwise plain and boring space. Coming in a variety of colours and patterns, these genuine cowhides provide a comfortable lived-in look that can be equally modern and relaxed. They can be used as a unique design element in nearly any setting for both [...]

Read More »

Sign up for our newsletter