Berber Rugs for Beauty and Versatility

Berber rugs and carpets were originally crafted by hand and made from the wool sheared from the Atlas mountain sheep. Dating back at least fifteen hundred years, these rugs were created by the women of the Moroccan Berber tribe (also known as the Amazigh or Imazighen), which has lived in various regions of North Africa for thousands of years.

Multiple generations of Berber women were taught to hand weave these beautiful rugs in the same manner that their mothers and grandmothers used. Looping techniques and certain patterns, sometimes extremely intricate, identified which family had made the rugs, which could be used for floor coverings or for bedding. The wool and occasional camel hair used to weave the original rugs could be dyed with natural plant colors or left in the randomly flecked natural colors that are still identified with the traditional Berber rug.

Producing handmade Berber carpets is still a flourishing industry in Morocco, Libya, Niger, Mali and Tunisia, where families of Berber weavers still supply local bazaars and markets, which then sell them to tourists and collectors. Many of these rugs are easily identifiable by the specific cultural and familial designs that are woven into them, and by the fact that they are made only from the natural, original fibers. Unlike other countries that still produce handwoven Berbers, however, only Tunisian authorities maintain a strict control over the production of these rugs, which they call Mergoum, ensuring that both the quality and the designs are authentic, and that no synthetic material has been used.

The distinctive look of the traditional hand-knotted wool Berber is now reproduced by machine, using a loop pile construction that looks similar to the original handwoven version. While colorful patterned Berbers can be found, these rugs are most well known for being produced in the traditional neutral color palette, with flecks of darker color showing in a random pattern against the lighter background.

Wool is not the only material used to make the rugs anymore; nylon and Olefin are also commonly used to produce them. Whatever materials are used, Berber rugs should be cleaned once every six to 12 months; and for olefin Berber, a dry or low moisture cleaning is recommended to avoid the brown or yellow spots that can point to over-wetting the rugs.

While Berber rugs can always enhance a luxurious living space, they are also very durable and stain resistant, which makes them particularly good for high traffic areas. Their versatility makes them an excellent choice to use in places as varied as schools, office buildings or a penthouse suite. The Berber combination of beauty and strength makes these unique rugs desirable for just about any placement.

Source by Lisa Fitzgerald

Why Business Stationery Helps Small Businesses

Part of any business is having a product and branding yourself, both in significant doses. Of course, there are vapid and shoddy products that have become popular simply because of branding and high-quality products that, with little to no advertising, became popular because of word of mouth. Although these two extreme instances are rare in marketing, the middle – a combination of a quality product and significant branding – is often the best path. Although you should start with branding once a product has been created, creating your brand can make your business and product more memorable. Basic advertising, of course, helps with branding yourself, but your company needs a name and a logo – one yet too simple nor too difficult to remember.

One of the ways to have an established brand is with business stationery. Whether sending out an invoice or representing your company in paper form at networking and job fair events, a name and logo speaks volumes about your company and also about your product or services. As mentioned before, the name should be easy enough to remember but not simple enough that it sounds too similar to a competitor's company or product. On the most basic level, getting your name and logo printed on business cards can make your company stand out. How often during networking events do you and your business people receive at least a dozen business cards? A business card, essentially, makes a first impression, on a visual level, for your company.

As with all pieces of business stationery, the logo and name should be pervasive. This often means that, in addition to business cards, your customized logo and name can adorn business letterheads and envelopes. This way, all letters you send out for your company to customers or client will be recognizable. This brand unification between pieces of business stationery gives the impression that your company is cohesive and put together.

Source by Irene Test