November’s – ‘The Fine Jewellery Issue’ – Download Now

We speak to six leading Arab jewellery designers about founding their brands and what fine jewellery represents to them.

Her Royal Highness Princess Nourah Al Faisal, Founder of Nuun Jewels

 

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When did you start your brand?

Nuun Jewels was launched in 2014 in Paris we held our first event at the Musée de la Chasse. I was quite nervous I remember but was very happy with the response we received.

What made you want to start your own jewellery brand?

My parents were actually the driving force and my late father, in particular, he was very keen that I spread my wings and that I launch internationally. I was quite happy just making my commission pieces as I had been for many years, to be honest.

How did you know when it was the right time to start your own jewellery brand?

I had been working on a collection for a while with the idea that I would hold a private exhibition in Saudi Arabia. After my father passed away I felt like it was time to finally do what he had wanted so I enlarged the collection and with the support of my family I finally to that step.

Why do you think your clients are so loyal to your brand?

I would hope firstly because they like the designs and of course the quality – I really put my heart and soul into everything I do, I strive to be authentic and to constantly evolve. I hope that they can feel that in my work.

How would you define your jewellery brand?

I don’t even try; I would prefer to leave that to my clients. I focus on always striving to improve.

What does jewellery represent for you?

It represents memories, family history and celebration, it connects us across generations and it is beautiful.

Hakima Al Said, Founder of HAK The Label

 

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When did you start your brand?

In 2018 I launched my first collection, Kindred.

What made you want to start your own jewellery brand?

I have always had a love for jewellery but designing my own pieces happened by accident! While working as a graphic designer for a jewellery brand in London, I was captivated by the complete process from designing through to production. This experience taught me the different aspects of jewellery design and so I slowly transitioned from a graphic designer to a jewellery designer.

How did you know when it was the right time to start your own jewellery brand?

I didn’t wait for the right time, to be honest, I just decided to go for it. I think the right time is when something clicks inside of you and you just think yes, this is what I’m feeling, this is a challenge and a journey I want to take.

Why do you think your clients are so loyal to your brand?

I believe it’s because my designs offer a unique balance of contemporary styles mixed with cultural symbolism. My clients also like to explore their individuality through their jewellery and my designs allow them to do this in a creative way.

How would you define your jewellery brand?

Bold yet minimal, fusing cultural symbolism with modern elements in designs that can be worn every day or styled as statement-making pieces.

What does jewellery represent for you?

Jewellery represents so many things from self-expression and individuality to telling your story in a creative way. I also love how jewellery can be a gift from someone special or a family heirloom that you can wear every day.

Donna Hourani – Founder & Creative Director of Donna Hourani

Donna Hourani

When did you start your brand?

I launched my brand in August 2016.

What made you want to start your own jewellery brand?

I have a background and BA in Interior Architecture and love design in general. I started by experimenting with my own jewellery and then found myself sketching designs and searching for workshops and suppliers to execute them. One thing led to another and I ended up with my own jewellery business.

How did you know when it was the right time to start your own jewellery brand?

It wasn’t preplanned. It naturally happened on its own. I think I had all the necessary basics to start and then took it from there.

Why do you think your clients are so loyal to your brand?

My clients not only love the product but they love the experience that comes with it. Jewellery is meant to last forever and with that, it carries a sentiment, stories and moments in the client’s life that they want to cherish and pass down for generations to come. I try to provide this experience and emotional attachment to every piece I create for them.

How would you define your jewellery brand?

Donna Hourani jewellery specialises in honest, sustainable and purposefully selected pieces, each collection with a unique message and story to tell. Every customized or personalised piece is a physical representation of the client’s story and is meant to serve as a daily reminder and provide a positive thought or emotion related to their story. It isn’t just a beautiful piece of jewellery but there is also a great emotional attachment to it.

What does jewellery represent for you?

It is an extension of you represented in a beautiful piece to treasure. Long after a person is gone, it is one of the very few items that can carry that person and their stories with them from one generation to the next. Its value increases with time. The older it gets the more valuable in terms of sentiment and monetary value as well. It is truly something priceless and treasured.

Jude Benhalim, Co-Founder of Jude Benhalim jewellery

When did you start your brand?

I launched the brand in 2011 alongside my partner and mother Rana, we established the brand together.

What made you want to start your own jewellery brand?

I discovered my passion for jewellery while working on a high-school project. I designed my first collection at the age of 17, and received a lot of compliments from people around me; that’s when my mum recognised my love for design and partnered up with me to co-found our brand.

How did you know when it was the right time to start your own jewellery brand?

I was very young at the time, I wasn’t really thinking about all the work that will fall upon me or at what cost; I was young and enthusiastic and very excited and I just dove into it headfirst. I guess you can never be fully prepared for establishing your own business because you can never really foresee just how much it will require of your time, passion and devotion. But since the beginning I felt it in my heart that this is what I wanted to do; and until this day work is my comfort and my happy place.

Why do you think your clients are so loyal to your brand?

My brand offers a modern, unique, versatile product with a little touch of Arab aesthetic; the perfect amalgamation. My clients love how “different” the pieces are. They also appreciate the colour options that come with every piece, allowing them to personalize their piece in the colour they love best.

How would you define your jewellery brand?

A high-quality jewellery brand that caters to the fierce yet feminine, classic yet daring, edgy yet elegant woman. Inspired by geometric shapes and architectural constructions, we bring these ideas to life through a fusion of materials and concepts that bring a mix of tradition and modernity; striking a blend of old and new.

What does jewellery represent for you?

To me, jewellery is an expression of character, confidence and individuality. Jewellery helps to empower women to express boldness, while embracing their femininity.

Alanoud and Aljazi Althunayan, Founders of AJ Jewelry

 

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When did you start your brand?

We created AJ Jewelry in 2015 when we were only students and had a passion for jewellery and design. We saw that people loved our designs and we gained recognition.

What made you want to start your own jewellery brand?

Since we were little girls we loved to create jewellery made of beads or strings. As we grew older we loved wearing fine jewellery pieces as we understood how precious they are. We started noticing a majority of people wore the same jewellery bracelets. So we wanted to design and create something different, and so we did.

How did you know when it was the right time to start your own jewellery brand?

We didn’t! In 2015, we participated in a pop-up show in Riyadh to showcase our first fine jewellery pieces which are the bar bracelet and the bar ring in yellow, rose, and white gold. Clients loved our designs and we sold out. We had to make new orders for clients and from then on we began to start and to grow in recognition.

Why do you think your clients are so loyal to your brand?

We create each piece with passion, we strive to become different and empower other women to do so as well. Our pieces are made to be mixed and match to every women’s personal style. We love to engage with our customers to see how they style their AJ Jewelry pieces. And of course, we focus on optimal customer service.

How would you define your jewellery brand?

Remarkable, chic and exquisite.

What does jewellery represent for you?

To us, jewellery is a sign of love. Whether it’s to gift your loved ones or your own self.

Nadine Kanso, Founder of Bil Arabi

Bil Arabi Dubai

When did you start your brand?

I started Bil Arabi 14 years ago and it was a medium of expression of identity and culture. The brand started as an art expression and I had no intention to create it but grew organically to become a leading brand.

What made you want to start your own jewellery brand?

As mentioned, the idea was not to start a brand, the statement was to appreciate the culture and be proud of our identity by wearing our language and not shying away from it.

How did you know when it was the right time to start your own jewellery brand?

With time and after having few orders, I started to realize that I needed to work on a brand and make it more structured. I always felt that things happen when they need to happen, I only moved to D3 almost six years ago and established an office and all.

How would you define your jewellery brand?

It has a strong DNA and represents a contemporary Arabia if I am to say.

What does jewellery represent for you?

Jewellery in my personal opinion has always been related to taste and beauty – to a personal connection to something we would wear over the years and will always tell a story.

November’s – ‘The Fine Jewellery Issue’ – Download Now

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