Sayr Yaay Misbah – Gold

by Lél Collection and IRTHI Contemporary Crafts Council United Arab Emirates

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This piece has been produced during the “Design Labs” initiative by Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council.

As part of the “Design Labs” initiative, Irthi collaborated with The Lél Collection, a Pakistan-based studio supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and whose workforce comprises of displaced Afghani artisans, to create the “Talli x Misbah Collection – A”.

This Misbah Collection is a reinterpretation of the traditional Misbah – the Emirati word for prayer beads – using it as an “open work of beads” which can be used as prayer beads or a piece of jewellery.

This line of jewellery Misbahs, made by jewellery artisans from Lél and Irthi’s Bidwa trainees from the Bidwa Social Development Programme, was made using lapis lazuli, woven gold and silver threads, and beads. The use of real gold and silver threads is reminiscent of when Talli first started in the UAE, where women would weave real gold and silver threads, unlike the synthetic metallic threads used today.

The threads used to create the Misbah were woven by Bidwa’s artisans using the “Sayr Yaay” and “Single Talli” Talli techniques.





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About IRTHI Contemporary Crafts Council Visit Showroom →

Representing both traditional and modern crafts across the MENASEA and Central Asia regions, working with partner organisations, and championing artisans and designers, the Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council is looking at the empowerment of women professionally and socially. The council aims to provide a fresh narrative for women, by developing new market opportunities, and sectors, delivering social development programs and vocational training, as well as preserving the skills and rich cultural heritage of the UAE for current and future generations through its five initiatives: Bidwa Social Development Programme, which employs 40 artisans and provides them with vocational training and helps them find new markets for their skills through commercial collaborations and regional artisan exchange programmes. Artisan Skills Exchange Programme, which enables the development of artisans’ capacities and technical skills as well as social development through a series of artisanal skill exchanges within the MENASEA region. Hirfati Youth Programme that seeks to train and engage with the next generation of designers and artists through a mix of activities that combine traditional and contemporary crafts. Azyame Fashion Entrepreneurs Programme that aims to develop the next generation of UAE-based fashion designers through training, mentoring and business development. Crafts Dialogue, a unique project that brings together the Council with Barcelona-based Creative Dialogue to create works, which will marry Emirati and international crafts into contemporary designs. Irthi Contemporary Crafts Council is an affiliate of NAMA Women Advancement Establishment, an organisation that was established under an Amiri decree by His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, and is chaired by Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah.
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