Celebrate Spring with Sayofles Sandals

It’s time to say Ola Kala Tha Pane (in Greek) to mean All is Well.  What with the UAE winter softly sliding away into the past, pave your way into Spring (literally) with handmade sandals by Sayofles Sandals. Alexia, the lady behind this brand, uses real leather from Greece and actually stitches the sandals herself (ask her to show you her hands that have seen leather, needle and thread and you will know).

After stitching the sandals, Alexia uses various embellishments to adorn them. Swarovski crystals to delightful Walt Disney characters. Flowers to colourful beads.

Sayofles Sandals are available in different colours, sizes and for men, women and children.

Sayofles Sandals are available in different colours, sizes and for men, women and children.

If you don’t like colours and prefer neutral shades of beige and browns, Sayofles Sandals can customise for you.

What's amazing about Sayofles Sandals is that they come in various designs of the actual sandals skeletons (even before the adornment is added)

What’s amazing about Sayofles Sandals is that they come in various designs of the actual sandals skeletons (even before the adornment is added)

Mickey and Minni Sandals.

Mickey and Minni Sandals.

She also makes sandals for men. You can be sure that if there is a particular size that you want to order, then she has them all.  Once a (male) passerby asked her (pointing out to her hello kitty sandals for kids), “Can you make the same for men in my shoe size.” She replied, “Yes,”
in all seriousness.

The point we are driving at is that , there is no size too small, too big; no colour to glitzy or staid; no order too ostentatious or boring for this young Greek lady to work your sandals appetite.

Tutti Frutti sandals for Spring.

Tutti Frutti sandals for Spring.

Join Sayofles Sandals on facebook.

Hats off to the Milliner

For French American Nadege Brunacci, fashion is indisposable. So she takes it upon herself to handcraft each and every piece of art in the form of hats. You will never see the same hat, colour, stitch twice at Nadege’s stand and hand.

Nadege, the lady behind these lovely handcrafted hats.

Nadege, the lady behind these lovely handcrafted hats.

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The girl who grew up loving the styles of Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn, wants to recover that sense of  ‘femininity’ so lost to women. If you want a hat, bring in  your favourite dress, and she will stitch a hat just to compliment that dress.  You can be sure that if a hat doesn’t suit you, then Nadege will say so and instead draw your attention to the hat that does suit your countenance, your style, your figure and also add inches to your frame (if you happen to be petite).

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Visit ‘Hats by Nadege’ on Facebook.

Taking the Silk R(o)ut(e) – Arna Rut

Taking the silk route is quite an addictive journey, according to Arna Rut. “When one gets used to wearing clothing made of silk, one doesn’t want to use anyother material.” For her working with silk is a totally different experience to working with other material.

“When I first came to the textile markets in Dubai I was amazed by the colors and selection of silk. I knew I had to make something out of it. At that time I was working with materials made of cotton and polyester, but since I started using the silk, it’s bit a case of no turning back.”

Arna’s collection of silk scarves is name Karisma, which comes from the word ‘charisma.’  “Charisma is when a person has a special charm, attractiveness or appeal that people notice. It is in their personality to stand out and inspire others. That is what I want my silk scarves to stand for when people wear them.”

“When I choose the silk, it is a combination of the Dubai lifestyle and my connection to Icelandic women that inspire me.”

Has Arna always been artistic?Since I was a kid I´ve been creating things. Ever since I remember I´ve been interested in fabrics, patterns and colors. My sewing machine has always been a part of my life.”

Last but not least, Arna ensures that she works with a selection of colours for the silk so that the woman can choose from the beautiful colours. “I also want them to feel special when wearing their scarf as their scarf is one of a kind. I only make a few scarves from the same fabric and no two scarves look exactly the same.”

We have to mention that Arna’s business cards is by far, one of the best we have seen. It communicates to the client the pure luxury of the Karisma line of silks, as luxurious as the silk products themselves. This is a lesson for all artisans to remember, that your business cards are your best marketing tools. Create one that stands for what your brand is like and you will be sure your clients will keep coming back for more.

Visit Arna Rut‘s website.

Have a Handmade Halloween!

Our ARTE Artisans have been very busy creating Halloween themed handmade products. From fun decorations to toys and delicious treats, each piece will help you stand out at your upcoming Halloween party.

Crochet Zombies and Pumpkins by Komeropuoti – Little Craft Shop

Pumpkin Toffee by Toffee Princess

Halloween inspired Crystal Tree by Sahar’s Luxury Handicrafts

Halloween inspired Cat-Shaped Decorative Cushions by Eva’s Cats

Stuffed toys by Natalia Sukhanova

Halloween Inspired Miniature Sculptures by Orange Jar

Halloween Bunting by Bright & Beautiful ME

Trick or Treat Buckets by Bright & Beautiful ME

Halloween inspired Cupcakes by Farah Nausheen Arshad & Sana Ayesha Arshad

Little boys set by In The Sand Pit

Polymer Clay Earrings by Mojeperle

Skull Cork Stoppers by Colin Roberts from 2RGalleries

Seeing Halloween from a ‘beady’ perspective

As an artisan, one has to always find ideas that go with the theme of a craft fair that one takes part in.  For Vandane Pande, that meant using gemstones that were the colours associated with Halloween, without going out of her jewelry style, which tends to be simplistic, yet bold. She used chalcedony for many of her pieces. As you can see, there are no pumpkin cutouts or witches in any of her pieces. Yet, she has stayed true to the Halloween colours, but adding a bit of her creativity to make some special pieces.

Go for a ruddy orange necklace, instead of the usual Halloween orange hue...

Go for a ruddy orange necklace, instead of the usual Halloween orange hue…

Instead of using black stones in the following piece, Vandana decided to play with the colours and use lapiz blue tones along with the orange colour. The piece on the right is also quite exquisite, replacing black with pearls for most part. So if you are a lover of pearls but generally don’t go for Halloween colours (namely black), this piece could be a winner for you.

Check out the orange and lapiz blue necklace on the left.

Check out the orange and lapiz blue necklace on the left.

An array of chalcedony, carnelian in various orange, red and black shades. Fit for a Halloween queen!

An array of chalcedony, carnelian in various orange, red and black shades. Fit for a Halloween queen!

Having diversified into making wooden art paintings (having a painting on both sides), Vandana’s heart is still in the midst of gemstones. “Since we were children, we were surrounded by gemstones, thanks to my father. I have always worn a ring with one gemstone or another, since childhood.”

Vandana shows off one of her new art wearable pieces to a customer. Note the stunning black/gold chunky choker she is wearing!

Vandana shows off one of her new art wearable pieces to a customer. Note the stunning black/gold chunky choker she is wearing!

In her corporate job, she found herself working as a fashion merchandiser. One day, her Australian boss decided to create a line of jewelry to compliment the fashion collection he was working on. He put Vandana in charge of the designing and instructing of the artisans, discussing what stones would be used. So you can see, that the rest is history. “I really loved the designing consulting bit, but hands on jewelry making was not in my mind then.”

It was only a few years  ago in 2007 that she decided to try her hand incorporating her designing experience, her love for sparkly gemstones and that’s when ARTE saw her joining as a member, who has stayed on ever since.

A mix of Halloween colour hues and sea colours for the latest wooden pendants ....

A mix of Halloween colour hues and sea colours for the latest wooden pendants ….

Visit Vandana Pande‘s collection on facebook.

Studio Saubhagya- T(h)reading on Success

Photo copyright Studio Saubhagya

Photo copyright Studio Saubhagya

One day, Ms. Sonal, the lady behind the Studio Saubhagya brand, had a bright idea. She decided to translate her fashion design expertise into the realm of making jewelry using mixed media work (chiefly thread and other embellishments). At affordable prices, Studio Saubhagya’s collection caught the eyes of many a colour-junkie and the hearts of those in love with embroidery, embellishments and jewelry.
Recent months have seen Sonal return to making accessories that have the repeated embroidery theme that is so synonymous with her jewelry line. She now makes sets of lovely keychains with personalised themes. Note the Car and Home themes below. The elephant, peacock and other animal trinkets are made of wood so you can be sure they are going to stay intact.

Delicately crafted Keychains crying out to be seen (and purchased!)

Delicately crafted Keychains crying out to be seen (and purchased!)

Home-Car-Home ...Represents our modern life.

Home-Car-Home …Represents our modern life.

Note that Sonal makes lovely bags with a quilted bottom so that they stay put when placed on the floor, table or chair. If you look at the interior of the back, you will see neatly embroidered pockets to keep your mobile phones and more. Great to use as a beach bag we think.

 

Close up of the a heavily embroidered bag by Studio Saubhagya

Close up of the a heavily embroidered bag by Studio Saubhagya

We are sure Studio Saubhagya can do a neat set/package of matching bag, book, keychain and mobile holder, with the designs that you decide upon. Such a great gift set!

Consider buying a gift set of a bag, book/note pad, and keychains for a loved one!

Consider buying a gift set of a bag, book/note pad, and keychains for a loved one!

Visit Studio Saubhagya on facebook.

Ways to Go Green! (Recycled Gift Ideas & More)

Our ARTE Markets are an invaluable resource for visitors to discover a wide variety of beautifully locally crafted items for the home. Among others, ARTE also welcomes a variety of locally-based artisans, who are committed to using sustainable, eco-friendly practices.

Here are a few green gift ideas for any occasion, – hand produced by ARTE Artisans, who have put their skills and love into making the products.

Scrabble tile cuff links by Theresa Tsui

Old zippers transformed into attractive rings

Old zippers transformed into attractive hairbands

Sock monkeys by Sandustar Socks Toys

Sock monkeys by Sandustar Socks Toys

Upcycled driftwood candle holders by Kariba Arts

Hand painted bottles by Artmitul

Hand stamped old spoons 

Old CDs transformed into Candle Holders by Pretty Dezines

Fabric scraps transformed into reusable envelopes

Sale of Second-Hand Books in support of Feline Friends

There’s Something about Mary’s Designs

Mary Falconer’s handmade clutches are one of the most coveted items at ARTE. These pieces exude classic feminine sophistication, with a dose of glamour to boot.

Without any formal training, and mostly self taught, Mary is the maker and talent behind the sewing machine, creating these colourful and trendy clutches, one design at a time.

Mary Falconer with one her handmade clutches

A stay at home mom of three children, she decided to give entrepreneurship a go. It has since turned into something more remarkable for her. Her business is something she looks forward to each day, and is a constant source of gratification.

“I strive for difference and oneness with my pieces. Finding materials and then finding ways to challenge the perceptions held by people about the boundaries of these materials is what drives me. I therefore embrace vibrant colours, intense prints and textures and fuse them together to create a unique and expressive design.”

Image courtesy of Mary Falconer Designs

“I really do enjoy both the creative aspect of dreaming up new things and the business side of making it all work. It is not an easy process and certainly not quick as one might think, but it is a wonderful experience when the end product works out and it can be enjoyed by my clients.”

Image courtesy of Mary Falconer Designs

“My goal as a designer is to create a brand that truly defined a woman; a brand that embodies all the qualities I see in them: Strength, Fun, Independence, Elegance and True Beauty…”

To learn more about Mary Falconer Design, join her on facebook  or visit her website: http://www.maryfalconerdesign.com

Image courtesy of Mary Falconer Designs

A Head Case for Skulls

Make no bones about it; the skull trend is here to stay! Popularized by Alexander McQueen, the once gothic omens have been transformed into chic accessories and prints to give any outfit a chic and/or rock edge. At ARTE, Skulls have been embraced by several artisans creating fashion and jewellery to clothing and home decor.

Framed Flag Skulls by Gorgeoustuff

Polymer Clay and Sterling Silver Skull Cufflinks by Janys De

Skull Earrings by Lady Mauve

Skull Jewellery by Lady Mauve

Handmade Gifts for Men

We don’t know about you, but we find it notoriously hard to buy gifts for the special men in our lives. If there’s no one thing in particular that springs to mind, our fail-safe advice is usually a package of little treats, things to make him laugh, and useful objects. It’s a great solution and you can mix-and-match to fit the big guy’s personality.

What’s your guy’s personality? Dapper, foodie, adventurer, sporty, musical or geeky, ARTE has a little something for everyone…

Handmade Model Railways By Model Railways UAE

Handmade Mugs by Irene’s Pots

Scottish Tablet desert by Toffee Princess

Handcrafted Bottle Stoppers by Colin Roberts

All natural Shaving Soap Kit by PAN Soaps

Sterling silver Cuff Links and Tie Pin by Mr. Beaujangles

Elvis stencil art Cushion by Gorgeoustuff