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TAIIA Jewelry carves magnificence through wild, yet feminine touches

Tamara Al Shamari of TAIIA Jewelry keeps her childhood memories close when she designs her pieces. For her, every piece has its own identity and beauty. The Retail Jeweller World talks to the designer…

When did you discover your love for jewellery? 

As a little girl, I would always watch my mother dress up and wear jewellery. It always stunned me how she would instantly transform after wearing a piece.  Her eyes would light up and I could see the beauty unfold. My mother had a unique taste in jewellery herself. She had the curious talent of designing pieces, that her personal jeweller would bring to life. It did involve a lot of back and forth, a million teaks and fixes. I was probably 8 years old when she came back home with a wax ring one day. I was intrigued by this special kind of metal which was purple. She told me that it was a mould, a sample based on which the actual jewellery will be carved. I guess it was on that day that I fell in love with the art and decided to be a jewellery designer like her. I wanted to create pieces that spoke to consumers on a personal level. 

How would you describe your collections?

Every designer has their own special signature. I believe mydesigns reflect my personality —wild, colourful, yet feminine and soft. They are unique pieces filled with curves and brilliance that uplift the confidence of any lady that wears them. 

What kind of designs do you think do well? 

Nowadays,everything is becoming very practical. So, I believe practical jewellery is the best option for us. Colourful jewellery is also gorgeous for daily wear. People prefer layers now —things that transform any outfit into a super chic one. 

What inspires your designs? 

A woman’s beauty is my ultimate inspiration. When I create a piece, I always imagine how it will look on a woman, how it will enhance her femininity and stand out on her. Nature is my muse. I’m a tree-hugger and as cliched as it me be, the colours in flowers, trees and birds inspire me. 

How would you describe your style? 

Bold. And eccentric at times. Geometric shapes and figures intrigue me as I grew up falling in love with the art deco era of jewellery, and I feel that reflects on my style. 

How do you think the jewellery industry in Africa has evolved over time? 

It is impressive to see how Africa and the Middle East have evolved within the jewellery business over time.  We always looked up to foreign houses of jewellery, and now the roles have reversed. We have huge houses with the most valuable and the rarest diamonds. Education on diamonds and gemstones has allowed Africa and the Middle East to evolve into leading benefactorsin the jewellery world. 

What is your favourite metal? What gemstone do you like to experiment with? 

My favourite metal is obviously gold due to its lustre. It is also such a luxurious metal. I am a big fan of turquoise because it has sentimental value to me. Emeralds and tanzanitesalso work for me, along with diamonds, of course. It’s hard to choose a favourite gemstone because each has its own beauty.

Talk to us about your most memorable collection? 

The “Fleur” collection is the closest to my heart because of its femininity and delicacy. It was inspired by flowers, as the name suggests. The stones used are ametrine, tanzanite, and rutile quartz. The collection was made to reflect a soft side of TAIIA Jewelry. I used pastel shades and rose gold — my favorite kind of the yellow metal. 

What are your feelings about sustainable jewellery design?How do you incorporate it into your pieces?

Recycling and refurbishing jewellery is something I do now. I recreate new pieces out of old ones, especially for customers who bring in dated and bulky pieces. I turn one piece into 2 or 3 at times. It’s super interesting when you create something out of an old design yet retain the authenticity of the original piece. 

Sustainable jewellery is the future. I would love to use recycled gold, especially chips that are used in computers or special machinery. I have been waiting to try this for quite some time now, but sadly, it’s quite difficult because this kind of recycling still very common. 

Where do you think retailers and manufacturers need to improve when it comes to the jewellery industry in Africa?

The jewellery industry in Africa is yet to grow in the upcoming years. The world has evolved into a global village and the internet brings everyone closer. The Middle East and Africa have empires and houses of jewellery that are impressive. I think they will be taking the lead in the jewellery industry in the coming years. 

I believe the industry is doing very well.Apart from what’s happening in the world, it is refreshing to see that consumers have not lost their love and desire for gold and diamonds. 

What is your advice to budding designers? 

Manifest, work hard, and never give in to that little voice that says, “What new aspect do you have to offer that someone else hasn’t?” I heard that voice for years in my head and decided to pursue my dream anyway. Every individual has a different imprint, each designer has their own specific taste and style. No piece will be identical. Be strong and confident that you will succeed, no matter what. 

Courtesy: Retail Jeweller World News Service

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