Known for its colorful, cosmic designs, you'll be interested to find that L’Atelier Nawbar was actually founded in 1891. The Lebanese jewelry brand, has for years created pieces that were an expression of 'love, beauty, heritage, and spirit'. Their fourth generation sisters Dima and Tania are carrying on the heritage with beautiful modern pieces that are still timeless and aimed to be passed on for years and generations as a 'universal language of art.' We were excited today to talk to the power duo because of their amazing work as the first female jewelers in the Nawbar family business.
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1. How is it like working with your sister?
Growing up, we became best friends and inseparable, and realized that we completed each other. That being said, we enjoy working side by side especially that we have the same vision for our brand.
2. Tell us more about your abracadabra service...
The concept of L’Atelier Nawbar; an enchanted space where design, manufacturing and showroom merge into one.
With our workshop placed within our showroom, we introduced our Abracadabra services that include design and craftsmanship, up-cycling and remodeling, repairing along with our gold exchange service.
These services are also meant to promote a culture of sustainability, where nothing goes to waste.
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3. What materials do you use with your jewelry?
As jewelry designers with a conscious mind, we do our part to ensure that everything we create and deliver is made using ethically sourced materials under the laws of Fair Trade. Our jewelry is handcrafted with 18K gold, diamonds and an array of healing stones like Turquoise and Malachite.
We are highly considerate of the depletion of natural stones today, and use safer alternatives in some collections, such as ecological stones that are known to have lighter carbon footprint weight than natural ones. We also favor the use of recycled gold by melting it and using it in many of our new collections.
4. Tell us more about the collection you've made and dedicated to Beirut? How is it different?
The Fragments of Beirut collection is particularly special to us because it is an ode to our heritage. It is a reflection on our past influences, the generations that built this city brick by brick, window by window.
This capsule collection is an homage to that history, to the stories of our ancestors, to the windows that protected us from the cold, that let the sun shine softly into our homes, that added color to our city and reminded us of our culture with all its patterns, colors and fragments.
This collection is a testament to the Beirut we remember, with all its bright colors, patterns and fragments.
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5. Do you have a favorite piece you've ever designed?
It’s hard to choose a favorite design, but we feel a different connection to our latest Fragments of Beirut collection as it reflects our heritage, the Beirut we will always remember.
6. How did you adapt with the changes that took place in 2020?
As a brand we are working really hard on adapting to the global and local situation. We put a lot of time and effort into our online platform as we feel that it is crucial to have a strong online presence now in order to stay in touch with our global L’Atelier Nawbar friends and family.
7. This year has been very tough on many businesses, and with what took place in our beloved Beirut, how is your brand surviving such, and what advice would you give to other brands going through a rough patch?
2020 was hard on everyone. But we don’t know if it’s delusional or survival genes, but our instincts were always to get up and keep things running. We decided to rebuild and work quietly, efficiently and swiftly, and this would be our advice to all the creatives out there.
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8. With the unexpected shift that this year has taken, a lot of brands are looking at sustainable fashion, but you guys have been already doing that for a while. Can you tell us more about it?
At L'atelier Nawbar being responsible and conscious of the world we live in has been part and parcel of the brand's DNA from the get go. We have always promoted a sustainable culture, from the materials we use to how we produce and the collections we create.
We take pride in being one of the select few fine jewelry brands worldwide that actively chooses to rely heavily on craftsmanship, instead of heavy machine-made work. We also encourage our clients to do more eco-conscious choices and maximize the lifespan of their jewelry through our Abracadabra services; remodeling, up-cycling, repairing…
Another way we try to do more through our brand, is through the collections themselves.
A lot of what we do is inspired by the world that moves around us. We try to depict through symbolism and emulating its true beauty to raise awareness on the importance of preserving it.
9. What's your best selling piece for 2020?
Each collection has it’s own star piece. But most recently the Raise your Flag pendant gained a lot of attention from all over the world, shedding a light on the tragic events of August 4. These charm pendants are handmade with shattered glass from the city of Beirut, upcycled with colored Murano and set in 18K gold Mosaic of love creating perfectly imperfect flags, as tribute to our beloved Beirut.
This initiative is part of the process to rebuild, where all proceeds would benefit Arc-en-ciel, a local NGO.
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10. Do you have any tips you share with your clients on how to best stack jewelry?
We are all about stacking and layering colorful jewelry for a fun day to night look. Our jewelry is colorful and versatile.
We often share our tips on jewelry stacking on our social media platforms...
11. How do you personally wear your jewelry? Or what jewelry item do you prefer?
Just like the tips we share on our social media platforms; we love our jewelry colorful, playful and stacked!
12. And finally, where can one get their hands on your jewelry pieces?
L’Atelier Nawbar is currently found in our boutique in Beirut and our website.
Internationally the brand is carried by:
- Harrods in London.
- Madlords in Paris.
- Harvey Nichols in Kuwait.
- Bloomingdale’s in Dubai.
- Rosark and Just One Eye in Los Angeles.
We usually do a lot of pop-ups worldwide, but since the pandemic we have turned to our online platform and website to reach our international clients. We have a lot of plans for the future, but we will always keep our flagship store and production in our dear country. We aim to keep our legacy going and open up to new markets in the US, Europe and Asia to share our designs and love.
Main Image Credits: Instagram @lateliernawbar