BEIRUT: L’Atelier Nawbar is the Lebanese jewelry label you need to have on your radar. Established by Dima and Tania Nawbar in 2011, the designers are fourth generation jewelers and the first women to take over the family’s Beirut-based business which was founded by their great-great-grandfather in a gold souk in 1881.
Since establishing their own modern take on the brand, which celebrated its tenth year in April, sisters Dima and Tania have gone on to see their designs worn by international celebrities like Queen Rania of Jordan and Joey King, and have their collection of rings, pendants, necklaces and bracelets stocked at major retailers such as Harrods, Bloomingdales and Moda Operandi.
“Me and my sister decided that we wanted trendy jewelry for every day,” the designers told Arab News. “What we wanted to do with our jewelry is to make it multi-purpose. We want you to wear it day and night.”
The versatile pieces are designed to be worn in various ways. There are pieces in the collection that can be worn as pendants, or as a ring so that “it’s not just one piece of jewelry that you’re investing in,” said the sisters.
The sisters also decided to stray from the traditional business model and offer something new to the brand.
“We didn’t want to traditionally follow the family business as it was,” Dima said. So the sisters decided to embrace individuality by remodeling pieces and creating new bespoke jewelry for clients.
“We would take the pieces that my father gifted us for our birthdays and play with them, and create pieces that we wanted. So we wanted to give that same service to our clients,” Tania said.
Clients are able to bring their own jewelry into the atelier, and the designers will upcycle and redesign the piece into something fresh and modern.
“Maybe you have a piece from your great-grandmother that you never wear. We will take it and make it modern and show you how to wear it with your existing pieces or how to style it with designs from our collections,” Tania added.
“We believe that jewelry is an extension of you.”
L’Atelier Nawbar also has ethical elements to it.
The designers have taken it upon themselves to train socially-disadvantaged and displaced women in various handmade techniques, such as intricate beading and stone carving, offering elderly women artisans work to support their families.