Category Archives: Culture

Gë† ÐøωN ω¡†h †hë ÄFRØPÛNK Fúñk

September 8, 2015

Afropunk’s annual music festival is a walking exhibit of Brooklyn’s bold and brazen.  An eclectic sea of forward fashion, Brooklyn’s Commodore Barry Park hosts an artistic gallery of purpose and the repurposed.  Each attendee wore a story and we are beyond inspired by their pages of kaleidescopic color and culture.  No doubt, Afropunk goers boast an iconic confidence as they write their own rulebooks (sans the rules).  Similar to the music they gather together for, they manifest their own wind, straying from the smooth sailing currents of favored trends.  Bravo, Brooklyn, we have so much to learn from you.

afropunk_childofwild afropunk_childofwild

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Images Via OysterMag

⊃⊃ MORØCCÂN WËDÐING BLÅNKETŠ ⊂⊂

July 30, 2015

∴ For hundreds of years Berber women of the Middle Atlas Mountains in Northern Morocco have been hand weaving wedding blankets referred to locally as tamizart. Now more commonly known as handira, Moroccan wedding blankets have remained an integral part of the Berber wedding tradition. ∴

Moroccan wedding blankets

Moroccan wedding blankets

∴ When a Berber girl is still young, her surrounding female family members will begin constructing a wedding blanket composed of undyed sheep’s wool, cotton, and linen. The weaving process is a communal and collaborative effort during which the unwedded girl is taught the responsibilities of womanhood and marriage by the matriarchs of her family. The blanket is to eventually be worn by the young woman on her wedding day, so family members endow marital baraka or blessings into the textile as they weave it. ∴

Moroccan wedding blankets

∴ When the base of the handira is finished, mirrored sequins are added to its surface. This process is extremely laborious, yet vital, for when the blanket is worn by the bride on her wedding day, the sequins rattle and ward off any looming evil spirits. Additionally, when worn the blanket bestows fertility and good fortune upon the newly wedded couple. ∴

Moroccan wedding blankets

∴ After the wedding ceremony has ended, a Berber bride will wrap her handira around her shoulders and wear it during the journey back to her new home with her husband. A Berber bride is always carried, typically on a mule, during this procession and her family will follow behind carrying gifts for her new family. Aside from the spiritual qualities that the wedding blanket possesses, it also provides warmth during the chilly evening ride through the mountains of Northern Morocco. ∴

Moroccan wedding blankets

∴ Moroccan wedding blankets are intricately crafted and take years to complete. No two blankets are the same and each holds a special meaning to the bride that it belongs to. A Berber woman will hold on to her handira for her whole life and pass on the wisdom she has learned to the next young girl in her family. ∴

Moroccan wedding blankets

∴ Today Moroccan wedding blankets are commonly used in Western culture as a means of decoration. Their beautiful sequins and shaggy texture make them a great rug, wall tapestry, bed throw, or couch cover like we style it here in our studio. ∴

Moroccan wedding blankets

Moroccan wedding blankets

Moroccan wedding blankets

Moroccan wedding blankets

∴ Berber culture also influenced our Desert Dweller lookbook. In addition to the wrapping of the handira, it is customary for Berber women to tattoo their faces when they come of age. They will adorn themselves with multiple symbols near openings of their body, like the mouth and eyes, in an effort to repel evil spirits.  ∴

Child of Wild x Flash Tattoos

Child of Wild x Flash Tattoos

 

∴ We offer a variety of wedding blankets to choose from and Berber inspired Flash Tattoos too! Shop our blankets here and our tattoos here. ∴

⋅STØRŸ OF THÈ SQÛÄSH BLÖSŠOM⋅

June 24, 2015

¤ Squash blossom necklaces are one of our most unique items here at Child of Wild. Their rustic feel and hand made design make them a one of a kind accessory to intensify any outfit. Not only are squash blossom necklaces intriguing to look at, their symbolism reaches as far back as the Paleolithic period. Take a journey with us as we trace the roots of the beautiful squash blossom. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

¤ The two main components of the squash blossom necklace are the inverted crescent pendant that hangs centrally and the flower beads that symmetrically frame it on either side. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

¤ The upside down crescent ~ referred to by the Navajo as the naja ~ is a common symbol circulated by many world cultures. Universally, the inverted crescent is a symbol worn to ward off bad luck or the ‘evil eye.’ Originally used by the Moors in the Middle Ages, this emblem ornamented horse bridles to ensure the horse and its rider a safe journey or successful conquest. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

¤ The Spanish and Portuguese adopted this custom upon witnessing its use by the Moors and brought it with them when they traveled to South and Central America. The trend soon caught on in Mexico and then reached the neighboring Navajo. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

¤ The Navajo squash blossom necklace is the most widely recognized form of the inverted crescent in today’s society. However, the naja, traditionally thought of as a repellant of bad energy, holds a very different meaning for the Navajo. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

¤ In Native American culture, the squash blossom necklace is a highly esteemed symbol that marks their transition from a raiding society to a mercantile one. Within the tribe, prestige was once earned through ransacking and pillaging, however since the manufacturing of squash blossom accessories, a man or woman could instead pride themselves upon their craftsmanship and silverwork. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

¤ Around the 1800s, floral beads were added to squash blossom necklaces. The squash blossom necklace receives its name from these beads; however, the name is a misnomer. The floral shape actually resembles the Spanish-Mexican pomegranate blossom, not the squash blossom. The pomegranate blossom is the symbol of Granada, Spain so it is likely the Navajo received these beads from the Spanish and their name was mistranslated during the transaction. The first beads were made purely of silver, but over time they became more and more elaborate with the addition of turquoise and other natural stones. ¤

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

Shop our squash blossoms!

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

SQUASH BLOSSOM

CROSSING OVER

›› ÇRÖSŠING ØVËR ‹‹

June 16, 2015

‹♦ Christianity was introduced to most of the African continent during the late 19th century by European missionaries. Ethiopia, however, is one of the few countries that practiced Christianity well before European colonialism. In the 4th century, King Ezana of Ethiopia declared the state religion to be Orthodox Christianity and Ethiopian coptic crosses began to be produced. ♦›

CROSSING OVER

CROSSING OVER

‹♦ Ethiopian crosses are easily distinguishable from their beautiful baroque style lattice work. In general, elaborate geometric patterns are seen in Ethiopian art, so it’s not surprising this tradition was carried into their crosses. The overlapping designs are symbolic of an everlasting life and still hold that value in modern day. ♦›

CROSSING OVER

‹♦ Originally, crosses were cut out of bone, wood, leather, or stone. Starting in the 19th century, silver coins called birr became more regularly used and were melted down to create silver crosses. Different patterns and designs were incorporated depending on the region where the cross was made, and who the artisan was. Ethiopian Orthodox Christians began to wear their locally designed crosses as a statement of their faith and of their pride of their hometown. ♦›

CROSSING OVER

CROSSING OVER

CROSSING OVER

‹♦ Throw on an Ethiopian cross or beadwork to show off your faith or simply add some flair to your look! Shop these styles now: ♦›

CROSSING OVER

CROSSING OVER

CROSSING OVER

CROSSING OVER

∴ BØLD LÌKE ÂN ÏNÐÎAN BRÍDE ∴

June 4, 2015

⊃ No one accessorizes like an Indian bride! On her wedding day, an Indian bride will ornament herself through an intricate process called solah shringar. Solah shringar translates to 16 adornments – mirroring the 16 phases of the moon – and  includes pieces that highlight and celebrate every aspect of her female form. Each piece of jewelry holds symbolic significance with years of tradition behind it. ⊂

INDIAN BRIDE

INDIAN BRIDE

INDIAN BRIDE

⊃ Two of the most important details of solah shringar are the maang tikka and the bindi. The maang tikka hooks to the bride’s sari, falls down across her head, and rests on her temple. The maang tikka represents the wisdom a bride carries into her marriage in addition to protecting her from any bad energy. Aesthetically, the maang tikka adds elegance to the bride’s headdress and heightens her allure. ⊂

INDIAN BRIDE

INDIAN BRIDE

⊃ Bindis are worn in addition to the maang tikka. Traditionally, they are composed of a red vermillion powder dot in between the eyebrows, for red reflects love, honor, and prosperity. However, bindis can also include gems and be worn along the curves of the eyebrow as well. In the wedding ceremony, the bindi symbolizes the devotion of the bride to her husband and is worn to intensify the bride’s intellect. The area where the bindi is worn is known to be the sixth chakra, ajna, or the third eye. The sixth chakra is the energy node of concealed wisdom and the bindi enhances that wisdom. ⊂

INDIAN BRIDE

INDIAN BRIDE

An Indian bride will wear a maang tikka and bindi on her wedding day to ensure she looks and feels her best; however these looks can be rocked any time to empower your sixth chakra or heighten your allure. Shop these styles now:

Cherished Bridal Headdress

Durga Goddess Headdress

Pearl Hearts Bridal Head Tikka

Crystal Sixth Chakra Bindi

Shop our Indian wedding collection “LoveSTONED

Extra images sourced on Pinterest/Google Images