The brainchild of Azmat Akbar and Uzma Toosy, Jewelicious once again graced L’atelier for a two-day exhibition that opened on Wednesday. The event saw jewelry galore, with everything from kundan jhoomkas to dazzling zircon bracelets.
The Lahore-based label focuses on silver as their cornerstone material, with pieces ranging from 65% to 92.5% (sterling silver). However, for the more glamorous, there is a selection of gold-plated items and semi-precious studded trinkets.
‘Indulgence made affordable’ is the duo’s motto and tagline and, for the most part, their prices are competitive compared to high-end street retailers in the major cities of Pakistan. Ranging anywhere from Rs500 to Rs50,000, there is much to pick from in each category of jewelry such as tikas, jhoomers, rings and even entire sets. However, amidst the plethora of rich colours, shimmer and shine there is a deficit of edgy and creative designs.
“The maharani look is really in nowadays and this is not just true for brides,” commented Toosy, chalking up the new fad to Kareena Kapoor’s royalty-inspired wedding. The designing head also noted that Eid is prime time for jewelry sales, not just because women are accessorising their after-Ramazan celebrations but it is a dual investment for the shaadi season that lies ahead.
Bollywood fashion is not only an inspiration for the duo but also their manufacturing homestead. The bulk of their manufacturing takes place in Jaipur, which according to Akbar and Toosy gives them more freedom to buy in bulk as well as secure immaculate and timely labour. “Unfortunately, Pakistan is unreliable in terms of labour and resources. India is used to mass producing such things so they are better equipped to supply our order on time and be up to standard,” shared Toosy. She also noted that electricity shortages add to inefficiency in the sector.
Though they are employing labour mostly out of the country, they are trying to encourage stay-at-home wives and mothers to buy their stock online on discounts and sell them independently. “That’s one of the reasons we have set up the online system,” explained Akbar.
In partnership with outlets like L’atelier and Melange, Jewelicious adds to the convenience of the well-off Islooite’s shopping experience, making it a one-stop shop for clothing and jewelry cravings among the roza hunger pangs.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 5th, 2012.