the colors and designs of times past with the cloth and cuts of today, Bedouin
women in the Negev make desert themes come alive. The embroidery motifs
are based on ancient patterns. One of the unique aspects of Bedouin embroidery
is that patterns are sewn in mirror image.
The Women’s Association of Lakiya
(WAL) is a non-profit organization that leads a variety of social and cultural
activities as well as courses in women’s issues. Established in 1990, WAL
promotes the creation of paying jobs to Bedouin women within the context
of the traditional framework of their society. About half of the revenue
from sales go to the women as salary. Each woman receives fabric, threads,
and instruction from WAL. She then works on her projects at home — thus
providing women from far-away rural areas as well with the opportunity to
supplement the family income. Approximately 60 women participate in the
The embroidery project of WAL is the
brainchild of project coordinator, Hanna Deckel, a former arts and crafts
Finished products include shoulder
bags, hand bags, home ornaments, greeting cards, and clothing. Prices range
from 15-240 NIS.
Where: At the entrance to the
village of Lakiya on Route 31 north of Beer Sheva.