We are Driss and Bettina. Driss was born in El Ksiba, a small moroccan town at the foot of the Middle-Atlas mountains. Bettina is originally from Germany. We both made a career in Advertising in Amsterdam, which is where we met and fell in love.
In 2013, when we opened our charming B&B in a former Weaver's house in the center of Amsterdam, we wanted to integrate some of Driss' heritage into the interior decoration.
It was Driss’s mother who first suggested that we leave the busy souks of the city and return to Driss’s birth village. Here, we could source the carpets straight from the weavers and we could create rugs according to our own designs. We were able to establish a personal relationship with the artisan weavers and support them by paying them an honest wage.
This is a nostalgic journey for Driss. As a child, he would watch the decorative carpets grow, as if by magic, as the weavers worked at their looms.
Driss has a deep love for herders. Already as a child he was fascinated by the tranquility and free spirit of herders. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that Driss' father himself used to be a sheperd from a young age before he later became a tailor. His uncle continued to be a herder and Driss loved to join him up in the mountains when he was a child.
Sheep are an integral part of the landscape that surrounds the villages of our weavers. The sheep at the foot of the middle atlas enjoy the same freedom as they did centuries ago. Together with their herder, they travel the wild fields and mountains and graze naturally.
Most of our rugs are made of natural wool from happy moroccan sheep that we source locally. Although we sometimes still use wool that has been spun by hand, we now mostly work with machine-spun wool, as the hand spinning is such intense work. We love working with wool as it is a sustainable and natural material that adds pure comfort to your home and will keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
Each carpet is a labour of love, requiring artistry, patience and precision, and taking at least a month to complete.
Working with women in the surroundings of Driss’ birth village has been extremely rewarding. Driss has a personal relationsship with every one of our weavers and loves to communicate with them in their local dialects and language.
We can see first-hand the huge difference that the extra income from the weaving makes to the women’s standard of living. For centuries, the Amazigh women of the Atlas Mountains have woven luxurious carpets, passing the skill down from mother to daughter.
Once finished, the cherished carpet was often considered part of the family or exchanged as a precious gift or dowry. But factory production using synthetic materials is endangering this tradition, and the rugs and their talented weavers are becoming scarcer. By reviving the ancient practises of traditional weaving, we hope to keep this craft alive and to keep empowering women to more independence in Driss’s birth area.
After our rugs have been woven, part of our collection is washed using the traditional method that is originally known from the famous Beni Ouarain rugs.
Through the washing, the fibres of the wool open up which creates a more natural, furry look and makes the rugs even softer. They also shed less wool after being washed.
We always know exactly where our rugs come from, how they are made and that they are made up to the right ethical standards.
We do not sell rugs of unknown origin. We always want to know where our rugs come from, how they are made and that they are made up to the right ethical standards.
We have a stong love for and bond with the moroccan culture and people. It is important to us that everyone involved in the creation process of our rugs is treated fairly, equally and respectfully.
We only work directly with our weavers and suppliers and always make sure everybody is happy and confident to work with us.
Our weavers are independent and free to work in their own pace and rhythm.
We ensure good working contidtions and a fair salary for our team.
Our goal is to empower women to more independence and confidence in a male dominated environment.
We believe that this karma adds to the warmth and character of our rugs.