Monday, October 3, 2016


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    From the Moroccan verb "dlleq" meaning to knead, squash or caress, appears to be have first been used during the Middle Ages, where the Berbers in the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains discovered the water resistant chemistry of lime combined with olive oil soap to use this highly specialised plastering technique, which due to its high Ph value is also resistant to mould, to line cisterns to store precious water. It is a unique blend of marble dust, fine marble aggregate, slaked aged mineral-rich limestone sand from the area around Marrakech that creates a decorative, durable, very high polished, slightly wavy and velvety smooth finish compacted to eliminate any air pockets; at once hard as stone and soft as silk, the combination of soap and lime creates a living breathing surface coloured with the same mineral pigments whose patina appears to be part stone and part leather. Properly applied, tadelakt develops very fine hairline cracks that add to the ancient appearance of the finish and is the traditional seamless coating of palaces, hammams and bathrooms of the restored riads in Morocco and even tagine pots and plates. The age-old traditional application passed from master to apprentice involves the plaster, once set, being polished with a flat river stone then painted with a glaze of egg whites and polished again with a natural soft, black olive oil soap to speed carbonation of the surface and render the surface, called “golden plaster”, more water-resistant aImage result for tadelaktnd acquire a final rustic, sensuous appearance.Image result for tadelakt