Souks: The Soul of Marrakech

Souks: The Soul of Marrakech

September 26, 2019

Souks: The Soul of Marrakech

Discover the spirit of exploration, the raw edges and the vast beauty that are the essence of Marrakech, Morocco!

the souks in Marrakech - Moroccan pillows and rugs with people walking past

Morocco has always been a place of exploration, of raw edges and of vast beauty. Yves Saint Laurent said that Morocco taught him color. Jimi Hendrix found inspiration for "Castles Made of Sand" there. Bob Dylan, Jack Kerouac and countless others have found profound inspiration in Morocco.

We have too. The Firepot Tea Bar is decorated in souk finds from cactus silk pillows and handmade bar stools to antique Moroccan tea pots, carpets and hand blown beldi glasses. Each February, I return to Marrakech to lead my annual Ritual + Renewal retreat and inevitably return with new discoveries from the souks - rose, argan and sandalwood oils, brass spoons, healing Berber tea blends and more.

 

women in the souks

 

The souks are the shopping stalls in the medina, the center of town. Historically, nomadic merchants would trade and sell beautiful hand-made goods found on the ancient trading routes that connected east and west and north and south, right in the heart of Morocco. Camel and donkey caravans laden with spices, tea, sugar, salt, gold, jewels, herbs and other objects of passion or purpose would convene in the souks for community and commerce.

You might be surprised to learn that the best selling items at our Nashville tea bar are our gorgeous and colorful cactus silk pillows! We buy them from our friends Abdul and Salim, who source their textiles direct from artisans in the High Atlas Mountains. Direct trade here means that more money goes to the makers in Morocco and we can offer you a better price than other vendors who sell them for twice as much!

 

Moroccan Beldi Glasses; Moroccan Cactus Silk Pillows piled in a windowsill

 

Cactus Silk

Cactus silk is made from the Saharan Agave Cactus and the textiles are loomed by hand of this strong and luxurious material. They come in an endless number of sizes and rich desert colors. At the tea bar, we stock squares, meditation cushions and kilims, which can be thrown on the floor like a carpet or over a chair for color or protection. We stock pink, white and brown and bring in seasonal colors like turmeric and turquoise from time to time. There is no better way to brighten a space, inside or out, than with a cactus silk pillow. We keep them in the bay window at the tea bar and strewn them about the floor carpets when we host a Moroccan Tea Party (blog post on how to throw your own Moroccan Tea Party coming soon!).

Beldi Glasses

Beldi glasses are the traditional tea glasses that have been hand blown in Morocco for centuries. They come in all shapes, colors and size, but we stock the traditional Moroccan mint tea glasses that have a trademark bulge just beneath the lip. The lip is to keep your hands from burning and also for keeping the glasses in the wire carriers that are used to transport up to 12 brimming cups at a time! They are our favorite for not only tea but also wine, juice and water. Beldi glasses are especially perfect for little hands!

 

Pile of Moroccan pillows in the souks; woman and man posing in front of Moroccan rugs

 

Shop

Check out other souk finds on our webshop, let us know if you have any custom orders and stay tuned when I return from Marrakech next March with new finds!

Direct Trade

From the beginning, Firepot's mission has been to improve lives through sustainable business. Using tea as a vehicle for connecting people worldwide, I am always looking for sustainably and ethically made products on my travels from Morocco to Japan and beyond! Keep an eye our for more items rolling in and out of our site all the time.

Come to Marrakech!

Join me in Morocco in February 2020 and if you register by October 15, receive $200 off with the code MOROCCANMINT. Click here to register now!

Improving lives through sustainable business

Shop Cactus Silk Pillows Now      Read Next: Moroccan Mint Tea Recipe



Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Journal

The History of Tea in Japan
The History of Tea in Japan

October 19, 2019

Discover the culture and history of tea in Japan, from Zen Buddhist monks in 600 CE to modern times.

Read More

Genmaicha: A Taste of Ancient Japan
Genmaicha: A Taste of Ancient Japan

October 09, 2019

The combination of umami-rich sencha (Japan's spring-harvested, steamed green tea) and nutty toasted rice was so adored that it has become a traditional style of tea known as genmaicha, "brown rice tea".

Read More

Japanese Green Tea: Body, Mind and Spirit
Japanese Green Tea: Body, Mind and Spirit

October 03, 2019

The history between Zen and tea is ancient and deep in Japan, so it makes sense that teas there are grown and processed to provide health and wellness to body, mind and spirit.

Read More