We recently had the privilege of photographing our first Berber wedding in a village near Taliouine.
We were excited when the bride, Fatima, contacted us a few months ago about photographing her traditional Berber wedding. Because the wedding had some female only customs and traditions, she requested a professional female photographer. We love that our team includes a professional female photographer and hope to add more females to our photography team in the future!
Both of Fatima and her husband, Abdullah’s, families are from this village, though the bride grew up in the Netherlands and the groom grew up in Marrakech. Because their fathers are from the same village, they have grown up knowing each other.
We love Fatima’s passion for the traditions of her village and her desire to help preserve those traditions. More and more, Moroccans are opting for more modern weddings and these special Berber traditions are being lost.
The wedding actually took place over five days and we drove up from Agadir to photograph the final day of the wedding. Upon arrival, we received the warmest welcome and spent some time visiting with Fatima and her family at the family home.
With the whole extended family gathered together, it was a great opportunity to take some family portraits and some candid shots.
As the time neared for the wedding festivities to begin again, the men left for the home of Abdullah’s family and the women stayed and changed into traditional Amazigh outfits.
Later on Fatima made her entrance at the home of the groom’s family and the entire village came out to celebrate. We love that weddings in this village are celebrated by all.
For the next few hours Fatima and her female relatives and friends celebrated with many Berber traditions, each one held special significance and have been passed through many generations. Some of the customs are only specific to this village.
A few of the customs observed:
- At the beginning of the wedding week, a special potpourri is made for the bride.
- The bride wears around her neck a small pouch of salt and amulet to ward away evil spirits.
- One of the rituals involves the special braiding of the bride’s hair.
- In the Chleuh/amazigh tradition the bride is covered so her beauty won’t go ‘away’.
- The bride is dressed by her female relatives
- An unmarried boy (relative) cuts a piece of hair that symbolize cutting a ‘tawenza’, an old tradition where only married women wear a tawenza (bangs).
- In addition to these customs there is also dancing, singing, and of course, lots of delicious food – including tafarnout!
As the women celebrated first at the bride’s home and then in a room at groom’s family home, other wedding guests and the male relatives, including the groom, enjoyed a meal together followed by special entertainment from an Amazigh band and dancers.
It was a rich celebration and it was an honor to capture such an event.
*To protect our clients privacy and the privacy of those in attendance, we are only posting select photos where faces are not visible