Meet the Artisans
Meet the artisans
In this section we take you behind the scenes, to show you how some of the items we sell are made. Most of the items we sell are hand made by craftsman in Morocco.
The items we sell are purchased from different parts of Morocco as certain areas have developed specialities in a particular field. For example, Safi for ceramics, Fez for heavy detailed brass work, and Marrakech for ironwork.
We work with a Moroccan family, who have been exporting for three generations, have built up an extensive network of craftsmen with unparalleled skills, and don't use middle men. The craftsmen are paid a fair price for their work, they receive half of the money in advance, and the balance when they bring the completed items to the container. This enables the artisans to stay independent, support their families, and produce beautiful items!
Pottery from Safi
Safi with its large canning factories is not the most beautiful coastal town, but it is home to some of the most beautiful pottery made in Morocco. Even though, the countryside around Safi is beautiful.
The process of making ceramics hasn't changed much in last several hundred years. The kilns may now be fired with gas rather than wood, but the process is still hugely labour intensive.
Clay based rocks are broken into small pieces and soaked in water to soften the clay this is then sieved to remove stones and left in the sun to dry to a usable consistency.
The clay is then thrown by hand into various items and left to dry in the sun. If the items are to be carved, it is done at this stage.
Pottery is then fired to a 'biscuit' stage ready for painting and glazing. The painting is all done by hand with patterns done from memory. No two items will be identical.
The pottery is finally fired at a higher temperature and the items are left to cool in the kiln before being taken out and checked.
They are then all wrapped in paper and boxed to be taken to the container for shipping to us.
Ironwork from Marrakech
Well away from the tourist trails, and tucked against the back walls of the medina in Marrakech, are the artisans working with iron.
These skilled craftsmen create screens, trellises, lanterns, wall lights hanging lanterns and all manner of items in iron.
They work in tiny open fronted areas with a lump of wood as a work bench.
Furnaces that belong in ancient times are actively used to create the lamps that transform our gardens.
It’s hot, dusty and unlike anything I have seen before. Families work together fathers training sons to create different items, some specialise in lamps others window grills.
Each item is made by hand, with no two items being identical.