Our Moroccan mosaics are authentically handmade in our production unit in Fez, Morocco.
Making of the raw materials for Moroccan tile and Moroccan mosaics:
Once the Moroccan tile and Moroccan mosaics colors are chosen, the raw materials are produced by a potter, or „Fkhar,“ who handles the hand mixing of the clay, the sun drying, the color mixing of the glazes, and the baking of the raw materials in a traditional „beehive“ style kiln. The tile pieces are typically 5″x 5″ square tiles that are rough around the edges, called „lajoura,“ before they are hand chiseled.
Cutting of the basic ceramic Moroccan tile into small intricate Moroccan mosaics pieces
After the ceramic tile is kiln baked and sorted out, the raw materials are given to our master cutter, „Maalam Nakach,“ who hand chisels the desired pattern by cutting small geometric pieces called „ferma“ from the 5″x 5″ ceramic tiles. This step is very important since it is crucial that the „ferma“ line up perfectly with each other in order to create top quality mosaic patterns. Once the master sample is made, „Maalam Nakach“ distributes the „ferma“ to be cut among the cutting team which is made up of ten to fifteen cutters. The cutters then use hand chisels to cut thousands of small geometric pieces that make up the mosaic. The prototype created by „Maalam Nakach“ is as important to mosaic work as architectural drawings are to construction.
Assembly of the Moroccan mosaics
After the chiseled mosaic pieces have been given to the master tile artisan, the „Maalam Ferach“ and his team start assembling the tile by laying the small geometric mosaic pieces face down to ensure an even surface on the face of the mosaic. This is very laborious work since „Maalam Ferach“ has to grind a majority of the pieces, „ferma,“ into predetermined sizes based on the repetition of the mosaic pattern, „tarbiaa,“ to produce perfect geometric harmony of the desired pattern. This process is called „slaka.“ „Maalam Ferach“ then disperses cement and lime powder on the back side of the mosaic and sprinkles a small amount of water on top to hold the „ferma“ in place. This assembly process makes the mosaic ready for the final assembly stage which involves covering the back of the mosaics with a secret family mixture.
Cleaning is the last step of the mosaic making process. After letting the assembled mosaics dry for 24 hours, the mosaic panels are carefully lifted and cleaned before packing.
For more information about our hand made Moroccan tile and mosaics visit: