Origins of the Henna Dress

During the Middle Ages, the Jewish embroiderers of the Spanish royal court became the first to design the Henna dress. Following the expulsion of Jews by the Catholic monarchs of Spain, namely Isabelle of Castile and Ferdinand of Aragon, many of these embroiderers settled in Morocco. It was there that they slowly introduced this demanding art, done entirely by hand, and devoted themselves to fashioning these exotic dresses that have been worn by Jewish brides over the course of the centuries. Jewish women in Morocco wore the Traje de Berberisca at their weddings up until the end of the nineteenth century. At that time the ever-growing influence of European culture made its way to North Africa. This brought with it the traditional white wedding gown, which these women did not hesitate to wear.