Truthfully, I had decided not to post anything else about Moroccan wedding blankets. Enough said about those amazingly beautiful blankets! But then I recently found a wedding blanket so remarkably well made it just breaths the love for the young Berber bride. It reminded me of the semi nomadic Berber woman I befriended and from whom I bought my very first Handira, fifteen years ago.
She lived with her family in a Berber tent on the high plains between the Middle Atlas and High Atlas mountains. I think we were about the same age but she already had many children and a very different life. She was beautiful, with incredibly long black hair that dropped and touched the ground whenever she removed her head scarve.
Her home was extremely basic and her family was poor but their hospitality was heart warming and I was always invited to eat whatever they could share with a generosity that is more often found in the heart of a poor man than with those who have everything.
I was fascinated with the woman who introduced me to the art of weaving and the Handira. I was eager to communicate with her but she only spoke the Berber language and our conversations never surpassed the level of basic greetings and gestures. Despite our verbal limitations she seemed to sense my interest about her culture and way of life. She made beautiful things for household use and my great enthusiasm for her craftsmanship often made her burst out in laughter. I bought my first wedding blanket from her, not yet knowing what it was or what it represented. The sparkles had caught my eye and I became irrevocably enchanted with the Handira.