Label alert: 3 Pakistani jewellery designers to watch
They're inspired by everything from photographs to ripped paper
Zohra Rahman Jewellery
Growing up, Zohra Rahman always designed her own clothes. Her parents appreciated her individualistic sense of style and gave her as much creative freedom as she demanded. “I remember one Eid designing my own clothes and looking absolutely ridiculous. I had put fringe everywhere on my outfit.
Things didn’t change when she went to Central St. Martins in London to study jewellery design. In her first year at the university she made a toe ring with twigs sprouting out of it that reached up to her knees. “At university I used everything that I had learned to push boundaries within jewellery,” she says.
Rahman may have toned down her need to make a statement, but her pieces are still bold and expressive, standing out amidst a sea of overtly feminine, homogenous, and traditional designs. Her first collection, Minima, is a delightful exploration of clean lines, and her latest collection, Unsent Letters, explores the form of paper ripped from its bind.
K for Karachi
It was during a painful winter in New York City when Khaula Jamil first came across the marriage of photographic images and jewellery. She chanced across a stall by the name of Coco, at the Union Square Holiday Market where the designer had used her photographs of New York City to create earrings, pendants and rings. “I remember wishing I had similar mementos of Karachi right about then,” says Jamil, who at that time was a master’s student in photography at the Parson’s School of Design.
Years later, after moving back to Karachi and pursuing a career photographing for various development organisations and NGOs, Jamil decided to dabble in jewellery making – after failing to convince her designer friends to use this idea. She spent months perfecting samples with a local craftsman and once she finally got it right she made a Facebook page and put up photographs of her creations. She received over a hundred orders overnight.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit Facebook.com/khaulajamilphotography
Five years ago 26-year-old Rema Qureshi left a high profile development job at the United Nations to move back to Pakistan where she eventually decided pursue design. “My inspiration comes from my personal experiences, travels, observations and interactions with people,” says Qureshi, who describes her aesthetic as chic and utilitarian.
Qureshi’s first collection, Cuspate, mixes plenty of gold with hues of emerald green, blue, and maroon, and crystal accents. There is emphasis on nature, growth and re-growth, which is depicted in the form of leaves and feathers. And though she officially launched her label Rema Luxe only three-and-a-half months ago and her collection has fast become a talking point.