Tatreez & Tea: Embroidery and Storytelling in the Palestinian Diaspora by Wafa Ghnaim

Tatreez & Tea: Embroidery and Storytelling in the Palestinian Diaspora by Wafa Ghnaim

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Watan offers a curated selection of used Palestinian books, ranging from works of non-fiction to prose, poetry to novels, and more. This offering is an extension of our Palestinian Women's Library (available for free use at our Orland Park location).


Palestinian tatreez embroidery is a centuries-old folk art, traditionally passed from mother to daughter over a cup of tea. In Tatreez & Tea: Embroidery and Storytelling in the Palestinian Diaspora, Wafa Ghnaim brings traditional Palestinian embroidery to life by resuscitating its roots as a powerful, provocative, and profound storytelling tool used by Palestinian women for hundreds of years to document their stories, observations, and experiences — including those from her mother, Feryal Abbasi-Ghnaim. With 47 cross stitch patterns; six complete sets of dress patterns; tea, coffee, and quince jam recipes; detailed traditional Palestinian embroidery techniques and rare northern Palestinian Arabic tatreez terminology — each design, history and meaning is documented and preserved. Tatreez & Tea is far more than a book about traditional Palestinian embroidery designs and meanings: it’s an oral history documentation of the Nakba survivors in her family that captures the essence of tatreez stitching circles as they once were and how to recreate them in exile, as well as a way forward to resurrect tatreez as a source of identity—one that guided Wafa as she created a home in the Palestinian diaspora.