This Tuareg Mats comes from a small Village near the bigger town of Tichitt in Mauritania.
These mats were originally used as flooring and walls for the Nomadic Tuareg tribe. They are both extremely lightweight and durable which makes them easy to transport as well as withstand the harsh climate of the Sahara desert.
The base of Tuareg Mats are made of reed sourced from the Senegal River, the reed from this area is extremely strong and resilient. The decorative motifs are derived from goat and/or camel leather. While the leather is usually kept natural some tribes are known to dye the leather with local plants and spices to derive vibrant red and green hues.
Tuareg Mats are woven via a loom situated on the ground. Depending on the size, a minimum of two artisans intricately weave thin reed strands throughout the loom. Following the creation of the base they are then decorated with woven leather twisted through the reed base.
Each mat is one-of-a-kind and tells a unique story from the artisan. The design motifs are quite similar to the traditional Moroccan Amazigh symbols woven into rugs that represent strength, protection and prosperity.