Palestinian tatreez embroidery is a centuries-old folk art, traditionally passed from mother to daughter over a cup of tea.
Tatreez & Tea’s mission is to provide educational resources, namely through workshops, lectures and publications, to preserve Palestinian tatreez embroidery, folk arts and storytelling traditions in the diaspora.
Traditionally, Palestinian women created various crafts, predominantly embroidery, that told the stories of their lives. Today, personal narratives of the embroiderers are being lost due to our culture’s increasing aesthetic fixation and commercial appropriation of the art. At Tatreez & Tea, we believe that learning the handwork of our ancestors brings us spiritually closer to our family, homeland and culture.
The motion of embroidering the cross-stitch, pulling the threaded needle through the fabric in a meditative repetition. summons a powerful spirituality with the legacy of all Palestinian women who once did the same. We resurrect and honor the legacy of our grandmothers, our great grandmothers, and our great, great grandmothers who once embroidered on a chair in the middle of their garden, at home, in Palestine. When we embroider, we are instantly transported through time, place and space to a simple, peaceful moment of creation and craft.
The self-published, self-funded, self-promoted digital book, Tatreez & Tea: Embroidery and Storytelling in the Palestinian Diaspora, is a critical piece to our mission. The book includes rare and sacred information regarding our motifs that were rescued by my mother and grandmother when they fled Palestine in 1948, and would otherwise be endangered or completely lost in history. My mother and grandmother did not leave Palestine with embroidery pattern books. The patterns in the book are from memory, and from their dreams.
Tatreez & Tea can be purchased from Amazon, iTunes and Nook. Thanks to the continued funding from the Brooklyn Arts Council and the Clackamas County Cultural Coalition in 2017, the second edition of Tatreez & Tea will be self-published in print by mid-2018.
Contact Tatreez & Tea
The Brooklyn Arts Council fiscally sponsors Tatreez & Tea and accepts 100% tax-deductible donations on our behalf. Donations pay for the cost of supplies, curricula development, and in publishing the print edition. Donations are not used for salaries or administrative costs. If you are interested in booking an event, please contact Wafa here or at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are interested in attending an event, you can find current listings here.