Egypt’s internationally renowned iconic luxury jewellery brand, Azza Fahmy, had its start in the early seventies when its founder Azza Fahmy, went to train as an apprentice in Usta Ramadan’s traditional jewellery workshop in Khan El Khalili, in the heart of Islamic Cairo. Inspired by the rich Islamic cultural heritage surrounding her, she began incorporating Arabic calligraphy into her jewellery designs. Today, Azza Fahmy’s jewellery collections are admired all over the world and have themselves become a part of Egypt’s rich artistic legacy.
Drawing its inspiration from the architecture of the 13th century Mamluk era, Azza Fahmy’s most recent collection captures the ancient patterns and motifs found in the beautiful monuments of that period. Each piece in this Mamluk collection is created in the brand’s trademark mix of 18ct gold and sterling silver, adorned with diamonds, sapphires, rubies, pearls, and semi-precious stones such as black onyx, lapis and green amethyst.
The stunning 12 piece handcrafted collection includes several necklaces, earrings and bracelets, all expressing the artistic creativity reached during the Mamluk period, which was an era of artistic renaissance. Standing out in the collection is the majestic structural Qawsun Necklace, with its intricate arabesque pattern and eight-point star, detailing one of the most important elements in Mamluk architecture—the muqarnas (stalactite). Two of the collection’s other statement pieces are the Sultana ring and the Qalawun Cuff. The Sultana ring, which comes with a 28 carat amethyst, lemon topaz, or 25.5 carat lapis is inspired by Shajar El Durr, who introduced the first dome in the heart of Islamic Cairo; while the Qalawun Cuff interprets the intricate pattern found on marble panels used by Sultan al-Mansur Qalawun in his mausoleum.
“I began this collection in 2016 when I was asked to design a piece of jewellery to support a project to rescue the Mameluk minbars of Cairo. That was the start of a two-year journey of research and design,” says Azza Fahmy. Little did she know at the time, that this journey would result in one of her most iconic jewellery collections that would gain worldwide acclaim.
In addition to raising awareness of the rich legacy of the Mamluk era, a portion of the proceeds from the collection will be donated to help restore the one of a kind Sultan Hassan Mosque door, in collaboration with the Egyptian Heritage Rescue Foundation.