What is love?

…those immortal words made famous by Haddaway in the 90s and it remains a very good question, as yet unanswered definitively.

Here at Stuart Morris Textiles, we are readying ourselves for Valentines Day with a brand new collection of border designs inspired by all things romance. From the traditional hearts and flowers, long accepted across cultures as the go to symbols of romance, to the more unusual Gaelic knots and antique lace designs.


If you would like to find out more information about our wedding tea towels, you can click the link to our website below:


With all this love in the air we thought we would take a more in-depth look at symbols of love around the Globe and perhaps inspire some of our readers in the process.

Our deep appreciation for all things colourful is no secret and there are few continents that embrace colour as enthusiastically as Africa, so let’s start there: in Ghana.

Did you know that unlike our good friends in the Orient, in Ghana the Moon is in fact a male symbol and the symbol of love, called Osram Ne Nsoromma, is the symbolic marriage of the Star ‘woman’ and Moon ‘male.’ Traditionally the people of Ghana weave this symbol into brocade called Adinkra to symbolize faithful, harmonious and fond love.


Similarly the Kete Pa symbol, rather like the traditional crosshatch design literally translates as “good bed” meaning good marriage and the heart or Akoma in the Adinkra alphabet is a symbol for patience & tolerance, certainly essential ingredients for any long and happy marriage.


If you would like to learn more about Adinkra symbols and their meanings, take a look at this great article by Afroetic at https://afroetic.com/adinkra-symbols.

In South Africa, Zulu men and women have long expressed their feelings using intricate and beautiful beadwork called Ibeque. With the humble triangle at its ‘heart,’ a Zulu maiden would make a rectangular piece of jewellery for her beloved with a triangle woven into the design.

A woman giving to her man would display a triangle with the point upwards. A man giving to his woman would show the reverse. When a couple are married the two triangles are combined to show a diamond for a married woman and an hourglass (the two points of the triangle meeting) for a married man.

Each colour chosen for the beading is specific to the individual and is open to interpretation so as well as a necklace to express love and devotion, Ibeque can just as easily be made to express annoyance and frustration. So bead with care would be our advice!

A similar form of beading is also used in South America, specifically Colombia and we found this incredible example of the art practice courtesy of Artisania Combiana.

However you choose to celebrate Valentines Day this year we wish you lots of love and happiness and in the spirit of kisses would like to end our latest blog by mentioning a rather inspiring young lady called Caitlin who has beaten Ewing's Sarcoma not once but twice! Her project called Kisses4Wishes is aiming to raise £10,000 in the month of February to enable Rays of Sunshine, the charity that helped grant her wish, to help grant the wishes of other children fighting illness.


So maybe this Valentines you can join us in giving a wish as well as a kiss to someone special. You can support Kisses4Wishes either by text donation or via Just Giving here.


Happy Valentines from everyone here at Stuart Morris Textiles Ltd!


Katie Farrow

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