The plaster is applied in layers several centimeters thick over the surface to be decorated, then carefully smoothed by a tarrah, stucco master, then symmetry and measuring points are drawn by either a khatat, drawing master, or a maallem. difficult operations requiring the skills of a master craftsman are usually done by the maalem. a stencil is then used to produce the motif by a nakash, or carver.
The process of carving requires a great deal of experience, skill, and patience. the carver starts working on a very slow-setting plaster. before the plaster gets too hard, the carver uses an iron tool to chisel the it to specific depths. when it, water is applied to make it easy to carve . this technique of carving can be used for all kinds of motifs in calligraphy, geometry or floral arabesque.
All phases of production and installation of arabesque's carved plaster are done on site, including muquarnas, or honeycomb vault. every detail of carving and finishing is also performed on site. because of the flexibility of techniques used in carving on plaster, many decorations with difficult constraints can be used on uneven surfaces.