Woman’s shawls or capes (handira in Arabic; tabrdouhte in Tamazight) are more commonly known as wedding blankets. Handiras made by the Beni Ouarain tribe are considered to be among the most delicately woven textiles of Morocco. This very rare ceremonial cape worn by the women of the Beni Ouarain tribe is very finely and intricately woven, each horizontal band being different in design from the next. The richness of its very fine weave is designed to be viewed up close. The thick braided cords with tassels that serve to tie the cape around the shoulders are still attached. Long woollen strands have been left on the reverse of the cape to provide warmth in the harsh winters experienced in mountain villages. This cape would have taken up to two years to make. It is in superb condition.
An exquisite example of a vintage handira of circa 1970 in excellent quality. A real collector’s piece.
Exquisitely patterned and in amazing condition, this quality vintage handira really has the ‘wow’ factor! Photos really don’t do it justice. A collector’s dream or a wonderful item for anyone who loves perfect vintage textiles.
- Circa 1970
- 2.20 m x 0.85 m / 7' 3" x 2' 9"
- 5.5 kg
- Ref: HAN-BEN-503
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About Berber shawls
The Arabic word handira refers to a hand-loomed woollen and cotton blanket or shawl, sometimes with woven or braided cords that tie the garment around the wearer’s shoulders. In the absence of cords, they are usually tied by the use of fibulae (tribal brooches).
Paydar, N., Grammet, I. and Bonfante-Warren, A., 2002. The Fabric of Moroccan Life. Indianapolis, IN: Indianapolis Museum of Art. p187 (see photo).