Voices of Jerusalem: A Textile Merchant in the Old City

Voices of Jerusalem: A Textile Merchant in the Old City


ABU KHALAF: I am the third
generation of fabric. My family came
from Kurdistan when Saladin come
into Jerusalem. We import from
three famous countries of textiles, which is Damascas, Syria, Morocco, and India. All of these fabric, it’s coming from Syria,
it’s natural material from silk and cotton. In Jerusalem, the customer’s coming
from all over the world. But because I am
local store selling fabric, I keep my work more traditional. The Arabs, they use more
of the traditional of these striped fabric, because that’s the customs
for them. As I wear, the Arab use
and the Jewish use. It’s for men. They are a special material,
bright colors. The Christians,
they use more vestments. Normally you see the priests
in black. But in the feasts,
they use four colors a year. Now, the Catholic,
they use it from two pieces, as the white one over here. This cross is Jerusalem cross. We have it in the face, and you
have it also in the back. This is for the big rabbis
of Israel. It’s embroidery by brocade, which is a kind of thread,
metallic, from good quality. And here, you know,
this is a special, a menorah, and also David’s star
from the back. I like people to come,
to contact each other from different religions
in my store. We like to keep Jerusalem safe. We have the three religion
sharing. And I hope in the future
to be much better.

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