How it’s made
Step 1
Finding a good quality clay is extremely important to produce top quality Moroccan tiles. The region of Fez has one of the best quality clay in Morocco
Step 2
The clay is soaked in water until it reaches a soft texture. Once the clay is soft enough to handle it is filtered by hand
Step 3
The square raw clay tiles are then sundried in an all natural way. Most tile production takes place in the summer, early fall and spring.
Step 4
After filtering the clay a skilled craftsmen flattenes by hand the clay into square shapes. This part is very important because the clay must be compact with no air bubbles in it.
Step 5
After the clay is shaped, molded and flattened, it is kept and stored in a cool dry place to be readied for a first bake.
Step 6
After tiles are well dried another skilled craftsmen applies the colors to the upper part of the tiles. Be aware that today in Morocco many tile factories use paint guns to apply colors. Using spray guns provides the same looking tiles and many more colors are available with a lower cost. The reason we don’t buy spray painted tiles it is to ensure that the paint coating is thick and resistant.
Step 7
The tiles are now placed in the natural wood fired kilns. In traditional moroccan kilns heat circulates unevenly giving slightly different tones of colors to each tile. This imperfection makes Moroccan tiles so unique and beautiful.
Step 8
The end raw product is a 12 cm x 12 cm tiles with uneven edges.
Note: All our tiles are done 100% hand made, In our factory we use the same techniques as our ancestors to ensure quality and authenticity
Step 9
Zellige making is considered an art in itself. The art is transmitted from generation to generation by master craftsmen. They are 3 craftsmen needed for zellige. The fist selects the tiles and then draws the shape desired and passes the tile to the next craftsmen
Step 10
the second craftsmen roughly cuts and shapes the tiles with the help of a sharp tool that looks like a combination of an axe and hammer, this medieval tool is called in Morocco "mankach”. This tool is also hand sharpen on a natural rock
Step 11
The most important part of this entire process is the third craftsmen called also master craftsmen, he specializes in cutting of all the excess clay and applies precision cutting.
The end results are all these different types of shaped pieces that will be assembled to create the zellige patterns. the possibilities are unlimited
Step 12
We use lazer cut metal frames. The lazer cut frames insures us of equal dimensions on each of our border tiles
When the zellige pieces are ready we place each tile by hand within the metal frame.
Step 13
A three component ISO certified glue is applied. It takes 24 hours for the glue to dry completely, once dried the tiles sheets are now ready to be installed. The thickness of our zellige sheets is 1.3 cm and for bejmat 2 cm.
Step 14
In Morocco tile craftsmen install tiles one piece at the time. This is why for many years Moroccan zellige tiles where difficult to export. Today with our special glue zellige tiles are really light and long lasting. Because of the precision of laser cut on our frames we guarantee that tiles will fit just like a puzzle for an easy installation.