Berber Jewelry Empowering Berber Women
The Berbers also called Amazighs (meaning “free people”) are the indigenous group of North Africa. In Morocco, they represent about 50% of the population. The Berber culture and heritage are ubiquitous in many parts of Morocco. The Berber women play a very important role in the Amazigh culture. They’re known for their a capella singing “izran” and specifically for the expression of their identity through silver jewelry.
In addition to being able to define themselves through a unique combination of necklaces, headbands, earrings, and bracelets, Amazigh women also wear Berber jewelry because of its powerful meanings:
- Symbolic and mythical meaning: First, with certain shapes and materials, Berber Jewelry is seen as a way to protect yourself from the evil eye, bring prosperity and ensure fertility. The Hamsa or “hand of Fatima” and the Fibula are the most popular symbols used in Berber Jewelry and both of them have symbolic meanings. In fact, the main belief of “hamsa” is that the wearer will be protected from the evil eye and misfortune, while the fibula is a symbol of Berber women’s shape and fertility.
- Emotional meaning: Secondly, Berber Jewelry has an emotional meaning. In fact, Berbers traditionally pass on their jewelry pieces from Mother to Daughter. It’s a way to always feel strongly connected to their predecessors and origin.
- Economic meaning: Also, acquiring Berber jewelry has an economic meaning for the Berber community. In fact, it's considered as the private property of the Amazigh woman. In case of economic crisis, she could decide to sell her pieces in order to support her family. With the money, she could decide to buy cattle or lands. Berber women have the reputation of “smart family bankers,” which gives them a strong position in the relationship with their husbands.
- Socio-cultural meaning: Last but not least, Berber jewelry has a social meaning. In fact, Berber women wear them as an expression of social codes. Through its forms and designs, Berber jewelry is a way to differentiate tribes and regions of Morocco.
Berber jewelry has a real history and we are trying to keep that authenticity in our collections. Berber women are our biggest source of inspiration. Their beauty and their strength inspire us every step of the way!