The Empowerment Though Design project had an exhibition and an embroidery workshop at the main library in Frederiksberg, Denmark last month - I went to the workshop where we were told the story behind the project, shown pictures and saw examples of local needle and yarn work from Tunesia and Morocco.
The Royal Danish Academy School of Design has since 2008 been involved in the Empowerment Through Design in both Morocco and Tunesia. Studens and teachers have travelled to the two countries to help educate local women on how to make a design from beginning to end.
Needless to say the local women are extremely gifted with traditional needle and yarn work that makes the rest of us drool with envy - skills that have been handed over through generations. But often the finishing touch has been missing when selling their crafts at local markets - despite excellent needle work, would you buy the purse if the purse itself was really badly sewn together? I am guessing "No!".
They teach the locals about design - how to create a beautiful end-product that people/tourists actually want to buy as their craft is given the little extra touch to show it's beauty. A unique product created and sold locally and not some souvenir imported from somewhere else.