November 8, 2010
What beautiful craftsmanship! One sees these 'rideaux' (curtains) in doorways all over Provence. The true boxwood curtain is made from 'box', a very dense wood with beautiful grain patterns. From forest to bead is a long process. It takes almost 30 years for a box to have the 8-10 cm trunk necessary for harvest. Then it has to be stored for 2 years to dry before being transformed into a bead.
It is at this point that Manou Dia-Noguera, one of the few artisans left in France still producing these curtains, begins to work her magic. We see her at the Tuesday market in Lorgues and I can't help but marvel every time I see her handy work.
These curtains are multi-purposed as they not only allow air to circulate, but the boxwood also repels flies and insects. Most curtains are predominately the natural boxwood color, but as you can see, beads can be colored and patterns worked into the curtains. I have also seen them used as window coverings and room dividers. Visit Manou's website. International shipping is available.