In 2011, at a time of sweeping change across Egypt, we took a leap and decided to make life-altering changes for ourselves.
Leaving behind steady careers in public relations and interior design which had become a little less reliable in a changing world, we decided instead to embrace that upheaval for ourselves and head for the hectic streets of Khan El Khalili: a cacophonous hub of activity united behind a single, life-long commitment to a shared craft. A place of narrow pathways and low ceilings — coffee shops filled with familiar faces and unfamiliar sensory experiences; cramped stores, seemingly ruled by the whims of occupying cats. And, of course, the home of Egypt’s most experienced and well-regarded master jewellers.
Here, between these tapered alleys, we spent three years immersed in the world of artisanal jewellery. Here, with the benefit of a family introduction — because in a place like Khan El Khalili, you need the right introduction — we began to learn invaluable lessons from the master jeweller, Sufi, and one-of-a-kind character Haj-Khamis.
Not just in the art of jewellery, but in patience, in the difference between time well spent and time wasted — in the importance of doing things the right way, not just getting them done. Here, we began our journey as Sabry Marouf.
Mid-day coffeeshop breaks, when we'd catch our breath and replenish after hours of labouring within
Our mentor and spiritual guide. To him, we owe more than we can express in words.
Where a myriad of. small, independent workshops and shopfronts operate - Most of which are family run and centuries old.
Little modern Bastet kitties roam the market and alleyways. To this day, this are still revered and respected by the residents of Fatimid Cairo.