This is Samira, the most likely young woman in N'kob to help illiterate weavers sell their rugs on line. In 2004 she was nineteen and had been to seventh grade, so is the most educated young woman in town, but feels that isn't enough to allow her to handle the job. The day I was there she helped tirelessly, and I could see from the way she worked with me that she has lots of potential. Hopefully we can find her another job. In fact, when I returned in June 2003 she had just finished a training and begun teaching preschool in the village. She didn't make the rug below; her grandmother did. It's an older style called a "chedwi", and I have several more further along in this N'kob section.
Here is Samira in her new job as the village's preschool teacher. She has about 40 children in her class and has divided them into two age groups, 2-3 and 4-6. The older ones are learning to read and write, and they all enjoy songs and drawing. Her pay is what each child brings, usually $1-$2 a month. The village Association is planning to build an office, and they will let her use part of it for her class, which now meets in a donated building which has no windows or electricity.
Here are a few of her students in the classroom.
These students are watching others take their turn in a game at recess.
Piece 2.11371 is a "chedwi" made by Samira's grandmother, a flatwoven rug mainly in black and white with touches of color. The colors here are a deep red, blue and blue-green, and green. You can see them better by clicking on the photo. These pieces are all quite long and narrow, which you can see in the overall view here. I was told that many of them were made in the 1960s or earlier, and that the colors were from natural dye, and those factors plus the fine weaving are why the prices are higher than other items. This piece is about 4 3/4' x 11 1/2' and costs $1200.
This is Annaya Seqqat, and she and her two daughters (ages 17 and 20) made the rug below together. Her mother taught her to weave, and she began when she was twelve. Her husband is a farmer who grows wheat, corn, and vegetables when there is water for irrigation.
Piece 2.11379 is a flatweave called an "akhnif". The designs may be either woven or embroidered into the rug, and for this one both techniqes are used. The blue center is surrounded by woven white diamonds, and you can see the more delicate embroidered design on the warm red background near the hand in the close up. This rug is 3'10" x 6'11" and the price is $225. It is SOLD, but can be re-made.