The Best Gifts for Mother’s Day

Spoil Mom this Mother’s Day with a unique, handmade gift.

Mother’s Day is that special time that we can show our Moms how much we love and appreciate them. ARTE has chosen the best hand made, one-of-a-kind gifts that your Mom is going to love and you will definitely be voted as the Child of the Year.

The Holistic shop

The Holistic Shop creates crystal healing art and these rose quarts hearts and planters is specially made to show your unconditional love for Mom.

Agate handmade Jewelries

Gorgeous handmade fashion jewellery and accessories made with a variety of products including, gemstones ,beads ,brass and copper.

Desert Patch

Mom loves when you put effort into the gifts that you give. Join Desert Patch and create your own unique decoupage hearts that Mom will treasure forever.

pictoresca design

Lina Saurez will create your custom pillow filled with special memories of you and Mom.


Make sure your Mom rocks her jewels with a signature piece from Deseneros!

H makes bags

Handmade bags made by Heather, using a combination of new, vintage and recycled fabrics.
Grab one of the  Burqa sisters and spoil Mom.

Ups designs by Upasana kapoor

Her handmade abstract journals ,feather bookmarks and cute jute or brocade bag will definitely make your Mom smile.

Jewellery by Leah

Pure silver personalised jewellery from bracelets and necklace pendants. Children’s hand prints, footprints and drawings can be incorporated on to the jewellery to make gifts and keepsakes perfect for Mother’s Day.

Handy-Craftz & Artz

A beautiful union of candles and the traditional art of henna.These elegant candles are hand-painted with natural henna paste and will look lovely in any home.

Audrey’s Cat

Vintage Moms will be delighted with any of Lynda Kirby’s vintage collection items. Jewellery, clothing or even a stylish hat that she can wear to the Horse races later this month, will make her day.


Each picture is handmade to order and with a pattern of Arabic letters and numbers. Spell out your Love for Mom.

Handlettered by lama

Fantastic cups that lets Mom know how special she is to you.

Arlene’s Dreamcatchers

Make sure Mom gets a good nights rest with one of these lovely hand created dream catchers. Make sure you chat the Arlene to get a customized item that will be as unique as your Mom.

Blooming Basket

Real preserved flowers from Blooming Basket has under gone a preservation process which allows the flower freshness and suppleness to be kept for a long time without losing its beauty. A flower that lasts.

If you have forgotten about the most important woman in your life, make sure to join us at the ARTE Market , Friday 17th March at Mercato Mall and Friday, 24th March at Times Square Center to find your perfect Mother’s Day gift.

We would like to wish all our special ARTE Moms a very Happy Mother’s Day. We appreciate your hard work and dedication.

Don’t miss the next ARTE, The Makers Market!
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ARTE’s Artists

The Camel Lady by Darcy

Eid Mubarak – Here’s wishing you and your family a safe and joyous Eid Al Adha.

For those of you who are not travelling this Eid holiday, I invite you to join us tomorrow, Friday, September 9, at ARTE in Times Square Dubai. ARTE is the perfect place to work up an appetite before you go to your Friday brunch. ARTE starts at 11:oo, but many artists are open for business by 10am. There is plenty of FREE underground parking to keep your car cool while you walk around the gorgeous arts and crafts. What’s more, Biela and Caribou Coffee are open early for all your breakfast needs.

This week’s artist is the Camel Lady by Darcy (, Facebook ).



Darcy is originally from Los Angeles, California, USA, but has lived in the UAE for 17 years. She has been a member of ARTE for over 6 years. Darcy makes handmade papermache camels.



For many years, Darcy combined her love of theater with her love of papermache. Many of you may remember the yearly Christmas pantomimes that Darcy directed in Ras Al Khaimah and the myriad of set decorations and props that she made – from  palm trees to sea monsters. She even made a giant camel head so it was no surprise when she started making smaller camels.



Darcy’s camels travel well. Here are the two camels (Camill and Oswaldo) she took to the RIO Olympic games in August. They travelled around the country, often in just a plastic bag, and have returned home safely. Come meet them and learn about their adventure tomorrow at Times Square Center.



Each of Darcy’s camels is made individually by hand and has its own character. No two are alike.



Darcy’s camels come in many sizes and colours.



And are perfect for holidays, too.



Darcy decorates her camels using many textures:









and paper. Darcy has been collecting paper for years. Whenever she travels, she always checks out the local paper with her camels in mind.



Darcy welcomes special orders and is always up for the challenge of coming up with new designs. Of course, her camels take hours of work and orders take time. Being handmade, not every camel is perfect, but the flaws remind you that these camels are not made by machine or in a factory. They are made right here in the UAE and are exclusive to ARTE.



Stop by Darcy’s table tomorrow, near Etisalat, anytime from 10:30 – 6:00 and say hi.










ARTE’s Artists

Mehwish Riaz

May has arrived and with it the hot weather! With the return of the hot hazy days of a Dubai summer what better way to spend the day than a visit to ARTE! Today, Friday May 6th, ARTE is at the Oasis Center. Located off Sheikh Zayad Road, this cute mall is worth a visit and once you go, you’ll want to keep returning on the first Friday of every month!

This week, I want to introduce you to a young artist – Mehwish  Riaz.


Although her family is originally from Pakistan, Mehwish was born and raised in the UAE and considers Dubai her home. For 23 years, her passion has been drawing and painting. She started with watercolors and acrylics, but over the years has expanded her talents to include oil and ink mediums. It is not unusual for Mehwish to combine many mediums together.dsc_0008-copy-2-copy


I asked Mehwish how her interest in painting started. Mehwish is deaf and she found art an excellent way to help her communicate with the hearing world. Art allows her to use her imagination and to express herself.



I wondered if being deaf makes it difficult for her to work with customers at ARTE, but Mehwish just smiled and said her mother comes with her to The Oasis Center, Times Square and Al Hamra Mall RAK in order to help her communicate and share her more abstract art. Plus, the internet has made communicating with clients even easier.dsc_0003-copy-copy



Mehwish loves to paint and draw wild life, especially birds. She often uses ink, watercolor and acrylic to create her birds. She doesn’t like to just copy photos of wild life. Her images come from her mind and how she envisions her subjects. When I look at her work, I can see her struggle with the world and how her birds reflect the confusion and chaos of being deaf, but surviving in a hearing world.



Mehwish works contrast bright vibrant colors with a darker subject. They can also have a whimsical side which can be seen in her Arabic scenes like this camel:



Mehwish’s second passion is interior design. Blessed with good spatial order skills, Mehwish is the perfect person for ARTE customers to go to when they need advice on where to hang art in their homes and offices.



Mehwish can be found at ARTE, and you can contact her through Instagram : mehwish_art,  Facebook: Mehwish Riaz, E-mail:

Stop by ARTE and say hello to Mehwish.

#ARTE the makers market



Featured Artisan – Glass engraving by Suzan Gathoni

A Dubai resident for six years, Kenyan artist Suzan Gathoni specializes in glass engraving. Trained in Kenya with a British Master Glass Engraver and a member of the Guild of Glass Engravers, Gathoni is now a freelance artist participating in the ARTE markets.


Gathoni specializes in the technique of intaglio engraving, which she explains is the art of hand sculpting a three-dimensional design on to a glass surface, creating a negative image. As the light falls and plays on the deeply carved designs, the image appears as though it is in relief.


Gathoni's glass engravings

Gathoni’s glass engravings


Safety precautions are vital to the engraving process as the glass dust is dangerous to inhale. Gathoni advises “using water during the process as engraving should not be done on dry glass. The work area should be kept humid at all times, preventing the glass dust to dry.”


Gathoni at work

Gathoni at work


Nature and culture are Gathoni’s biggest inspirations. Her work regularly features wild animals from her native Africa. Liking Dubai and its people and cultures more each year, she feels motivated to expand her horizons, which is why you will see local UAE designs incorporated into her engravings.


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With both locals and expats buying her works, Gathoni believes ARTE has given her good exposure, saying that “It is amazing how Dubai people love handmade things.”

Follow her Facebook page and visit her table at this weekend, Saturday 20th December, at the ARTE market in the Arabian Center, Mirdif. Click here for the location map.


Images courtesy of Suzan Ghatoni.


Interview with Polymer Clay artist Anne-Sophie D’Souza

French artist Anne-Sophie is known of her eye-catching polymer clay jewelry work. She has chosen this handcrafting form to work with because she finds it a flexible medium to creating something bautiful either to wear (for example, jewelry) or embellish one’s home (vases, cutlery and even light switches). “Working with polymer clay is like entering a new dimension. The possibilities of creating amazing art are so many, I could not list all of them,” she says.
Anne-Sophie's booth at ARTE.

Anne-Sophie’s booth at ARTE.

She gains her inspiration from world leading polymer clay artists such as Donna Kato, Sara Shriver and Alice Stroppel. Hailing from Maine et Loire, France, a region known for its castles and history, she also gains inspiration from nature.  If you were to pop by Anne-Sophie’s studio, you will not only find polymer clay and liquid polymer clay but an array of other tools and materials which may be trash to others, but remain invaluable to her work. “I use alcohols to enhance my work. Apart from pasta machine, cutters and tools that are part of the polymer clay art creation process, I keep every single thing that I feel I may use in some project or another. Things like glass jars, bulbs, spoons to shape a bead. For creating impressions on the clay, you may find that I use a cap of a pen, or even a kid shoe print with flowers.” She smiles smugly and declares, “I have become a collector in my own home!”
Pretty Polymer Clay Flowers made by Anne-Sophie

Pretty Polymer Clay Flowers made by Anne-Sophie


Earrings that look like butterfly wings, ready to fly away!

Earrings that look like butterfly wings, ready to fly away!

Like many artists, Anne-Sophie loves working in other art forms, stitching and painting being on top of her list. “But only second and third to polymer clay,” she reminds us. While she invested in her first pack of colourful polymer clay way back in 2006, she only started to work with the technique in 2009. Eventually, this led her to participate at ARTE in early 2011.  “I love Mokume Gane technique, which involves having several layers of different colours and then impressing with tools of your choice (either stamps or sharp tools). Then you slice delicately and each slice is a different pattern with different colors. You use these slices to cover your core beads or shapes.”
Autumn and winter leaves?

Autumn and winter leaves?

Find Anne-Sophie at ARTE this Friday, Times Square.
Her website can be accessed here.
Follow her work on Facebook.

Rocking the UAE the handmade way this Christmas


With the holiday season upon us, ARTE is pleased to announce that we are participating at the Market and Winter Fun Fest, an event put together by the fabulous folks at the Green Community.  This in addition to our regular markets at Times Square Centre, RAK Al Hamra Mall and the Arabian Centre, Mirdif; making it so easy for you to catch up on your last minute shopping the handcrafted ARTE way at different locales around the UAE. At the Green Community festive event, there will be a Santa’s Grotto, a fashion show, dance performances and the lighting of the Christmas tree with carol singing. So, mark your diaries – Saturday, 13th December, 12 – 7 pm, and pop by to buy some colourful festive decorations.

Speaking of which, decorating is always a fun and festive activity.  Making decorations are even more fun.  That’s why the artisans at ARTE offer an array of handmade items to transform your home and entertain your family, friends and special guests like Santa Claus (and his Mrs.). Here are a few examples for festive decorative inspiration.


Wreaths  by The Flowerful Project

Welcome guests to your home with these natural, fresh wreaths by floral designer Alisa Sokoliuk. Serving as door, window or table decorations, they bring the distinctive pine smell of a traditional Christmas tree to your home.

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Images courtesy of Alisa at The Flowerful Project.


Knitted decorations by Marjan and Bahar

Iranian sisters Marjan and Bahar knit these nifty little tree decorations. They also have a selection of Santas in all shapes and sizes to fit into any nooks and crannies. You can view more of their knitted works here and read an interview with them on knitting for success.

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Textile and quilts by Tessa

For a warm and cosy Christmas feel, have a look at South African crafter Tessa Jahnig’s textiles and quilts.  See her selection from wall hangings and stockings to dinner tableware to add a festive flair. More of Tessa’s work is available on her blog.


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Christmas crackers by Wayne

Have some fun around the dinner table with these imaginative crackers by Wayne. Customize the colours, the words, the sizes, as well as the fillings, to entertain everyone. Wayne’s crackers also contain Whimsies by Wade (collectible figurines from the UK). They were even featured in the film “Harry Potter and the Chamber of secrets”. To read more on the history of crackers, see Wayne’s website.

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Nativity scenes by Miriam The Felt Lady

Iconic to a traditional Christmas celebration, every home needs a nativity scene. For a variation on conventional sculptures, Miriam Walsh fashions these intimate scenes from felt and wood. You can find more information on Miriam here.

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Once again, here are the dates for ARTE markets in December:

There are three more official ARTE markets before Christmas:

Friday 12th December at Times Square Center,  Dubai

Friday, 13th December at Green Community, Dubai

Friday 19th December at Al Hamra Mall, Ras Al Khaimah

Saturday 20th December at Arabian Center, Mirdif, Dubai.


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Please visit our website for further details.

Images taken by Stephanie Neville unless otherwise credited.

Celebrate UAE National Day with our artists

In honour of UAE National Day on the 2nd of December, we are featuring ARTE’s amazing artists who will be showcasing their art this coming Friday at Times Square Centre, Dubai.  Central to ARTE’s charm, we showcase a variety of artists who employ a range of mediums and techniques to translate their individual experiences of living in the UAE. Have a look at the beauty of this country’s people, landscape, culture and ideology through the artists’ eyes:


Carrie Wareham

Since childhood, British artist Carrie Wareham was intrigued by stories of the Orient, like Aladdin’s tales. Moving to the UAE in 2001 she fell in love with the architecture, specifically the windows and doors: “I felt there was a certain mystique about them”. Wareham’s “Majlis” series is inspired by the traditional red tents used for social meetings, where the warmth of the welcoming hospitality is echoed in the rich colours in her work.

Images courtesy of Carrie Wareham


Hanifah Balangue

Currently a student of Islamic Art, Hanifa Balangue has lived in the UAE for 7 years. Describing the Emiratis as “very nice people, helpful and respectful”, it is this peaceful environment which inspires her love of Islamic art and Arabic calligraphy. The calligraphy is particularly enjoyed by the Muslim community and Balangue is excited to share her work with other residents and tourists. Read more on Hanifah Balangue in a previous blog post here:


Images courtesy of Hanifah Balangue 


Purvi Verma

Financial Analyst turned full time artist, Purvi Verma has been living in the UAE since 2011. Perceiving the UAE as an Expat dominated country, Verma enjoys being amongst so many different nationalities, breaking stereotypes by crossing borders. The UAE inspires her work with its “rich culture and heritage which has certain similarities with my home country [India]”. Read more here on Purvi Verma from a previous blog post.

Images courtesy of Purvi Verma


Catherine McEvoy

A resident for 2.5 years, Catherine McEvoy “realised how fond people are of their time in the UAE and that they want something beautiful to remember it by”. Being able to customize her work to customers’ specific colour palettes, her UAE-based designs such as “Jamal the Camel” and the “Grand Mosque” remain to be the most popular to cherish memories of the UAE.

Images courtesy of Catherine McEvoy


Marlene Metni Nasra

Moving to the UAE with her family in 2003, Lebanese artist Marlene Metni Nasra spends her time raising her three children, doing yoga, playing tennis and painting. “When I moved to Dubai, I felt that the beautiful scenic landscapes and its national heritage were better expressed in watercolour”. Nasra also uses mediums like oils and acrylics. She employs the “Hand of Fatima” as an artistic metaphor to translate the tolerance she experiences between the different nationalities and religions “living peacefully side by side”. Read more on the ‘Hand of Fatima” and Marlene’s work from a previous blog post here.

Images courtesy of Marlene Metni Nasra


Maruska Lebrun

Dutch artist Maruska Lebrun have been living in the UAE since 1979. The desert landscapes, the beautiful sunsets, the play of lights and darks have always been a great source of inspiration for her. She portrays Arabian wildlife, like camels and falcons, as well as traditional Arab architecture and landscapes. Painting mostly in watercolours, Lebrun’s work shows a maturity and sensitive understanding of the environment as a long term resident of the UAE.


Images courtesy of Maruska Lebrun


Meet these artists in person at ARTE Arts & Crafts market, Friday 28 November at Times Square Mall from 12 – 7 pm. Please visit our website for more details.


When in Ras Al Khaimah, go to ARTE

The best excuse for a road trip to Ras Al Khaimah this Friday is taking a pit stop at the ARTE Arts & Crafts market at Al Hamra Mall. Our vendors are showcasing a variety of unique products and with the Festive Season approaching fast, head out with your family for a fun shopping spree.

Here is a small sampler of what to expect at UAE’s only artisan market.


MVCO- Mary’s Virgin Coconut Oil

Kick off your visit with MVCO- Mary’s Virgin Coconut Oil. Passionately handmade by Mary Hubert (who is based in Ras Al Khaimah) from selected matured coconut kernels, this versatile and naturally healthy oil boosts the immune system, keeping those seasonal cold and flu bugs at bay.

Images courtesy of Mary Hubert.



Palm Lights candles

Eco-friendly Palm Lights candles are created by environmentalist Bhawna Sehra. Using vegan palm wax, 100% pure aromatherapy grade essential oils, aniline free dyes and cotton or wooden wicks, she ensures that each candle is unique in colour, fragrance and design. Read more on Palm Lights in a previously published blog story on this versatile artisan.

Images courtesy of Bhawna Sehra.


Sand Pictures

Join in the fun at the Sand Pictures table hosted by Iva Kostadinova. With cartoon character pictures and multi-coloured sands, we cherish their slogan, “We make kids happy.”

Images courtesy of Sand Pictures.


3H by Tatyana Pastukova

Tatyana Pastukova’s handmade teddy bears and dolls inspired her trade name, 3H, from the ideas in her Head, to working with her Hands, each character becomes a piece of her Heart.

Images courtesy of Tatyana.

Lola Team

Travel back in time with these custom-made, vintage inspired accessories and watches by the Lola team.

Images courtesy of Lola Jewelry/ Watches.

ARTE Art & Craft Market at Al Hamra Mall, Ras Al Khaimah will run from  12 – 7 pm on the 21st of November, and every third Friday of the month. Click here to find your way to ARTE at RAK.

Arabian Centre and RAK Hamra Mall, here we come! Plus all things wood

Since ARTE said goodbye to the long term location at Dubai Festival Centre, we have now found new homes in other locations – such as RAK Hamra Mall as well as Arabian Centre in Mirdif, in addition to the two markets at Times Square. Well into our ninth year, the ARTE family have truly expanded throughout the Emirates and beyond.  You just have to look at the highly interactive facebook page standing at 16K followers and our social media is full of videos, instagrammed photos and tweets and an ever growing list of subscribers and fans that support handmade in the UAE. Thank you all.

So don’t forget to pop down there to see us.



In the meantime, we are dedicating this space to some amazing wood crafts by our artisans. Enjoy the gallery!


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Follow these artisans on facebook.

Kariba Arts

Miss Green Tea

The Joinery Shop

Wael Hamadeh    – read more about his work here.

Prerna Unlimited – read more about her work here.

Lilly’s Floral Decoration– read more about her work here


All photos used as owned by the artisans unless otherwise indicated.