How did you manage to take Azza Fahmy Jewellery global?
(Fatma Ghaly) For us, it was seeing the potential in our unique creations. I believe in our brand too much that I knew it had to be celebrated globally, not just regionally. It’s important that, as we expand, we have to research every market individually with its trends and dynamics and see how we can adapt our product accordingly without compromising our design essence and core brand values. That was and always remains our biggest challenge. The brand has also been acclaimed by international publications like Vogue, Financial Times, Vanity Fair and CNN, in addition to being favoured by many global celebrities including Naomi Campbell, Rihanna, and Vanessa Williams to name a few. Further to Fashion collaborations, as a brand that celebrates world cultures, we also embark on cultural collaborations, two of which were Bespoke collections for the British Museum.
Why are collaborations so important for the brand and why have they become a successful factor in your global expansion? Can you name a few?
(Fatma Ghaly) Collaborations provide such a great opportunity for designers to expand their business horizons and push each other’s design envelopes; we place a lot of value on our global collaborations and long-term partnerships. International collaborations have been part of Azza Fahmy Jewellery ever since we set out for London Fashion Week and New York Fashion Week with renowned designers like Julien Macdonald, Preen, and recently Matthew Williamson. Further to fashion collaborations, as a brand that celebrates world cultures, we also embarked on cultural and educational collaborations, two of which were bespoke collections for the British Museum’s exhibitions.
Tell us about your current and future plans for Azza Fahmy Jewellery. Any big projects in the pipeline?
(Fatma Ghaly) Our focus is on international expansion. Naturally, our shift and directions are towards growing our online presence and using it as a main channel.
How do you define ‘luxury’ when it comes to jewellery?
(Fatma Ghaly) Our luxury, or how we define it, is creating something personal for our clients. Having a relationship with them, and most importantly creating a personal and emotional connection and experience with the jewellery. This gives them a unique and enriching experience.
What’s next for Azza Fahmy?
(Fatma Ghaly) This coming period, we continue to focus on our global expansion via retail growth, while placing a lot of focus on our online presence as well.
What first sparked your interest in jewellery design?
(Amina Ghali) I’ve always been interested in art, but I knew for sure that I wanted a career in jewellery design when I designed my first piece during my studies at Alchimia, Contemporary Design School in Florence, Italy.
How would you define Azza Fahmy Jewellery design ethos?
(Amina Ghali) Whenever you pick up a Azza Fahmy Jewellery piece, the DNA of that piece is always evident, whether it is our famous mix of sterling silver and gold, our calligraphy, or detailing and craftsmanship. Our jewellery is not just something pretty you wear, it’s something that tells a statement and a story on its own. Reviving heritage, art, research and time-honoured techniques.
How do you approach your designs? And what are your favorite materials to work with?
(Amina Ghali) Approaching my designs is one of the most challenging parts of my job. On average, a collection takes about 18 months to come to life. The journey begins with extensive research, with the help of trend forecasters and stylists. The collection starts slowly coming together in my head, and I am constantly on the look-out and influenced by catwalks. Jewellery is very much integrated in the fashion scene; one can’t go without the other. I love working on the mixes of sterling silver and 18 kt gold, and I enjoy travelling to India to pick out the stones that we use for our collections.
Who are your favorite designers?
(Amina Ghali) Theo Fennell, and Miriam Haskel.
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