During the 1950s, Egyptian products were dominant here in Egypt, until the 1973 war when president Anwar Sadat opened the door to private investments, a decision known as “Infitah” (opening). That decision backfired on Egyptian-made products, making them weak and unwanted. However, recently, after several youth empowerment initiatives, in addition to the youth’s will to be independent and have their own businesses, several startups started to rise, providing the most unique products. Egyptian products came back to the rings with their mix between Egyptian taste and modernism. If you want to go local and add some valuable pieces to your closet, have a look at this article.
We all noticed the beautiful copper-made clutches that were carried by most Egyptian actresses, for example, Nelly Karim at the Gouna Film Festival. Also, the first lady, at the World Youth Forum’s opening, carried a similar clutch.
Those copper clutches are made in Egypt, under a brand named Okhtein, designed by Egyptian siblings Aya and Mounaz Abdelraouf. As a brand, Okhtein is remarkable because of its hyper-local manufacturing process. Each product has a unique source with deep cultural associations. To manufacture their products, Aya and Monaz felt compelled to take a charitable approach to their work by wanting to incorporate more hand embroidery and straw into their products’ skin.
This resulted in mutual cooperation with many local NGOs working to provide assistance to skilled workers who have experienced significant financial difficulties. Those bags became very trendy for so many reasons; first, they are very bright and authentic, second, compared to prices of designer clutches, they are quite reasonable, and third, because of their charitable background. Whether you are aiming to buy a copper or a leather Okhtein bag, you will be blessed with a trendy Egyptian bag, highly recommended to add one of their master pieces to your après-midi outfit.
Another brand in the fashion field known as Palma Egypt. It produces high quality bags that are very authentic and purely Egyptian. Palma combines both leather and Sinai embroideries. They have different styles and designs. If you are looking for a backpack, a messenger bag, or even a laptop sleeve, go for those pretty, reasonable, embroidered, and a bit Boho bags.
Speaking of Gouna Film Festival, celebrities did not only go local by carrying those clutches, but also by dressing local. Youssra El Lozy, for example, wore a Kojak dress. Mohanad Kojak is a young Egyptian fashion designer, the fonder and creative engine of Kojak Studio, who impressed a lot of celebrities and people through his vision of fashion, with his simple, unique, and authentic designs. Kojak sees fashion as art which continues to provide the beauty of history’s clothing, with imaginative designs.
On the other hand, when it comes to causal clothes, we must check out Civilian Clothing. They succeeded in launching a causal and semi-formal line, through combining jeans and cotton with other materials. The clothes are very comfy and fashionable, and of course, made in Egypt. Before going on a shopping tour, you can check their Instagram page and have a look at their comfortable designs.
Local products do not stop at only bags and clothes, but also, we have the new eyewear brand Nile Eye Wear. Nile Eye Wear have gotten trendy recently, with their unique style and attractive designs, they are completely out of the box. Nile Eye Wear managed to market their products through those unique designs, not to mention their competitive prices compared to other eyewear prices.
We cannot forget the final touches of any outfit; a très chic piece of jewellery made by Reem Jano will be a valuable addition to your outfit. Reem Jano’s collection was inspired by Arabesque, which makes them purely Egyptian, as if it is architecture worn on the body. Reem Jano’s Egyptian gold designs will take you back to an ancient Egypt where gold is very unique and authentic. If you are willing to change your jewellery box anytime soon, check out those vintage-style accessories.
These local brands were all established by Egyptians, who launched their startups and were supported by many public figures, celebrities, and NGOs. They are not cheap, but reasonable for the quality and designs they provide and definitely cheaper than similar imported products. GO LOCAL, BE AUTHENTIC.