Photo from Bohemian Design

For my behind-the-curtain interview with Jill Parker, I asked her if there was a certain trinket or souvenir she relishes from all of her travels as a headlining bellydancer.  Her response inspired today’s blog:


“I bought a Moroccan Wedding rug in the Atlas Mountains at small women’s craft market a few years ago. The woman I purchased it from was a small older tribal woman with tattoos on her face and hands. She had kind eyes. She was fascinated with my tattoos. She was very warm with me. We agreed to a price

Jill Parker in the Atlas Mountains

without any common language. I loved the interaction as much as I love the rug itself. It makes quite a statement with an explosion of texture and color.”

Moroccan wedding rugs or blankets are called handira, and they are gorgeous textiles rich with tradition. In the Atlas Mountains, Berber women come together in preparation for a woman’s wedding to create the textile on a loom from sheep’s wool. While  the women closest to the bride-to-be worked side by side, attaching shiny pailettes by hand, they tell stories and offer marital advice – no sense being shy about the birds and the bees with Aunt Millie because you guys are stuck together for a little while working on your blanket! Then the bride wears the blanket around her neck like a cape as she travels to her new marriage home.  So you can imagine why having one of these textiles in your home might foster an incredible feeling of family, warmth and blessing.


Here are some great examples of styling your boho space with a Moroccan handira:

  1.  Luxurious and elegant master boho bedroom with a touch of sparkle, like that of Kate Hudson:

Photo from Design Co. Roman & Williams portfolio

2. Hang as a tapestry for a super trendy, rustic boho home entryway

Photo from Remodelista, at home with Kara Rosenlund, photographer/stylist/buyer/seller
Photo from The Jungalow by designer Justina Blakeney

3.  Add a super fluffy, sparkly touch to a magical nursery or bedroom for a little princess

By Bijou and Boheme, designer Christine Dovey


4.  A room with edge- how about a black and white look with a punch of red?

Photo from El Ramla Hamra


5.  Create a cheery tribal bedroom using a sunny yellow handira surrounded by plants!

Photo from El Ramla Hamra

6. Keep it pristine – a white and gray palette for a shabby chic studio


7. Wrap yourself in sunshine and warmth using a handira as a throw or fluffy pillows made from one for your peaceful reading nook

Photo from The Fresh Light


From Beyond Marrakech


I always like to remind tribalistas to research your ethnic goodies. Be sure you show items respect and appreciation, especially if they are wrought with meaning in the cultures from which they come, like these handira blankets.   And always try to buy ethically and fair-trade whenever you can to ensure the livelihoods of the folks from which you’re borrowing are sustained.

*Note: This is not a sponsored or affiliated blog.

For more “behind the curtain” with Jill Parker, check out our earlier post about Headliners and their Furbabies

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