My visit to the Azza Fahmy jewelry workshop outside of Cairo. By Glenn Belverio

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Silver Horus Necklace with turquoise beads and scarabs, symbolizing transformation, from Azza Fahmy’s Pharaonic Collection


Dear Shaded Viewers,

While I was in Cairo in February, I had the pleasure of touring the workshops of Azza Fahmy–located a few hours drive outside of the city–to see how Ms. Fahmy’s stunning pieces are made. Founded in 1969, Azza Fahmy is an international luxury design house which specializes in jewelry and is based in Cairo. Ms. Fahmy is the Middle East’s leading jewelry designer and is known for breaking down barriers in design. In 1969, she became the first woman in Egypt to be permitted to train as an apprentice with the masters in Khan El Kahlili, Cairo’s jewelry quarter.

Azza Fahmy, Indjy Hosny and Rawah Badra at Cairo’s Fashion Night at The First Mall on February 9, 2013

Azza Fahmy is uniquely characterized by incorporating different cultures into wearable art while combining it with intricate craftsmanship. Each piece of jewelry revolves around a central inspirational motif, a poem, a piece of literature, a romantic or spiritual idea, or simply a beautiful thought.


At the Azza Fahmy workshop.


One of the craftsmen with a work-in-progress.


A sketch of the Winged Khepri Scarab Ring from the 2013 Nostalgia Collection.


Silver and gold Scarab ring, representing transformation in Ancient Egypt- ‘Amarna’ 18th Dynasty
(circa 1352-1327 B.C.) The beetle’s wings, protecting the wearer, are adorned with classic gold
filigree. Inspired by Tutankhamun’s winged scarab jewellery, 1333-1323 B.C., this piece is a continuation of Azza Fahmy’s 2012 Pharaonic Collection which focuses on Love and Wisdom in Ancient Egypt.



Craftsman’s desk



From the Nostalgia Collection: ‘Transcending Happiness’ – silver and gold cuff, decorated with a khepri-scarab, symbol of transformation, holding a sun disk, below an offering table laden with the ‘fruits of the Nile’, lotus flowers, and hieroglyphs for protection, the heart (seat of the Mind), stability and dominion- Inspired by Pharaonic jewelery of the New Kingdom and column capitals from the Temple of Philae.




Metal stamp for the Transcending Happiness Cuff



CNSG.12-002- Pharaonic Nekhbet Necklace

From the 2012 Pharaonic Collection: Gold and Silver Nekhbet Vulture Necklace. The wings combining feather Pharaonic dress motifs, clasped with a scarab and lotus flower terminal; inspired by Queen Ahhotep’s armlet from her tomb in Dra Abu Naga, Thebes, 18th Dynasty (circa 1540 B.C.).

The collection represents Love and Wisdom in ancient Egypt. Some of the jewelry is inspired by pieces from the tomb of Princess Khnumet at Dahshour (19th cent. B.C.) and the art and architecture of the New Kingdom (15th – 14th cent. B.C.) but with a special on the Amaran period (circa 1352 – 1327 B.C.) when love of nature was most elegantly expressed.

The sage Ptahhotep wrote in the late 3rd millennium BC, “Follow your heart.” The designs of the Pharaonic Collection are inspired by this maxim. The heart was the seat of intelligence. The quintessence of Man was his Ka (the spirit of sustenance), Ba (soul of mobilitiy), Akh (transfigured spirit), his shadow, and his name.


From the Pharaonic Collection: Silver and Gold Winged Scarab Cuff, the wings protecting the owner, the
scarab a symbol of transformation.




From the Nostalgia Collection: Classic Azza Fahmy ring garlanded with two Diamond stones and signature filigree outline with gold. The ring combines together the beautiful and celebrated Azza Fahmy signature design classics of the 90’s.





Quality control room where every piece is inspected and scrutinized.




Metal stamper







From the Pharaonic Collection: Classic Silver and Gold “Hand of Friendship” Necklace, the hand offering lotus flowers and buds; inspired by ‘Amarna’ 18th Dynasty Art (circa 1352-1327 B.C.)



Thank you for reading.

Visit Azza Fahmy’s online shop:



Glenn Belverio

Glenn Belverio

Glenn Belverio is a writer and New Yorker. He has been reporting for ASVOF since 2005 and currently works at The Museum of Modern Art as the Content Manager for MoMA Design Store.