Ringing the changes with your interior can sustain the versatility of the place you call home. When it comes to furnishing your house, it is preferable to keep adding or omitting pieces to spruce up its feel. Since it could get costly to recreate an entire space, adding accent pieces and accessories to decorate a room can give it a new-fangled look. Aurum hopes to provide that.
As the interior brand gets set to have its first exhibition on January 31, The Express Tribune speaks to Aurum’s creative director Minhal Sadiq Saigol to get a peek into her vision and what her brand has to offer.
“As clichéd as it may sound, the idea came to me when I was decorating my own space and couldn’t find anything,” says Saigol. “I did not want to buy accessories from abroad, so I began experimenting with things here,” she adds. A psychologist by profession, she found her calling in designing accessories and accent pieces. “I’ve never been more interested in anything other than this. For almost a year now, I’ve been eating, living and breathing this.”
Saigol’s range includes coasters, bottle stoppers, cushions, candle stands, acrylic trays, sculptures, ashtrays, tissues boxes, lamp finials, which are all priced under Rs10,000. Her second range of accessories includes marble platters, cocktail tables, lamps, framed mirrors, consoles and side-tables. What draws one to Aurum is probably the geometric nature of design Saigol plays with. It is three-dimensional, which is what makes it unique and create a statement within a house.
What Saigol has attempted to create are accessories that can be found anywhere in the world, but are solely made in Pakistan. The environment and climate also play a major role when working with metal. So, the brand has created a controlled environment for finishing their products so that the harsh climate of Pakistan doesn’t affect the final product.
Aurum is distinctive in how it makes use of brass in its purest form and brings out the material’s opulence by using stones, such as lapis, serpentine, black tourmalines, and halite, popularly known as rock salt. “It took me about six months to sample different products and see the viability before conceptualising my brand,” comments Saigol, adding, “In the process of sampling, I realised that an entire collection had been made and, after working out the kinks in production, I felt stronger and more confident about the pieces.”
While Saigol sources the lapis, serpentine, black tourmalines and halite from the northern areas of Pakistan, the amethyst specimens are from a dealer, who supplies them from Brazil. The malachite tumble stones from Congo, and the rose quartz/agate spheres and slices are all sourced from various dealers who ship them.
Aurum deals in statement pieces that are meant to accentuate an existing living space. “The point is not to fill your entire house with these items because nothing will stand out and they will overpower each other.” Saigol has a fair understanding of her brand and what segment of the market it is catering to. “The hardest thing in putting this together has been trying to make my craftsman comprehend what I want,” she states. “People here are not used to working with brass in its purest form and achieving the finishing I want has been a problem.”
Published in The Express Tribune, January 31st, 2015.