During our summer holidays in Morocco (2016) we were exchanging with our parents on the beauty and originality of the Moroccan culture. So many international companies were inspired by the Moroccan craftsmanship, whether for home decor, clothing, or essential oils. There was a real trend for the "Moroccan touch”!
Also, we always loved jewelry since we inherited this passion from our mother. We then saw the opportunity to create a line of jewelry entirely handmade by Moroccan artisans. When we informed ourselves about those jewelry techniques, we realized that there were disappearing … We deeply wanted to preserve this heritage that was part of our history!
Our mother inspired us so much. Since our younger age, we were used to seeing our mom wearing bold jewelry pieces. Back in the years 1995, she actually wanted to launch her own website and sell Berber jewelry pieces but due to personal reasons, she didn’t go through with her passion. Today, she’s our biggest supporter!! She’s also involved in different parts of Moroccan Birds.
By far, our favorite place/city is Marrakesh. We both grew up in Casablanca but our father’s and his family are from Marrakesh. Since our younger age, we used to go to Marrakech almost every weekend to visit our grandparents. There’s something indescribable about this city: the colors, the mix between tradition and modernity! This city actually inspired a lot of designers. Yves Saint Laurent used to live there and Marrakesh greatly inspired many of his collection.
- Chefchaouen, known as the blue city
- Sahara Desert (Merzouga)
- And of course Marrakech!
An authentic jewelry brand that shares a history, supports a community of local artisans and preserves a heritage!
I would say it’s when we had our first intern. It was amazing to see that someone else can treat your baby as their own baby. To see them entirely committed to Moroccan Birds’ success is fulfilling!
It’s amazing! It’s intense but in a good way. We push each other forward! Our personalities are very much different: Zineb is very calm and takes everything in a more relaxed way. When I get stressed under pressure, she’s the only one who knows how to temper me!
Sometimes, working with a family member can be hard to manage because we do not separate our working life from our “family” time. Since it’s our passion, we’re always talking about it and exchanging new ideas.
We talk more about “collaboration”. In fact, we collaborate with our artisans. Zineb draw the designs but then it’s their expertise that comes into play. It’s a long process and constant dialogue between the founders and the artisans before creating a Moroccan Birds piece. We really want their work to be globally recognized. It’s just amazing how much attention they put into each creation. Every single detail is made by hand!
Some keywords are so trendy those last years: sustainable, ethical, social impact ... and in some cases brands overuse them.
You have to truly feel that your brand is making an impact. When we traveled during 4 months in the south of Morocco, it reinforced our idea of creating Moroccan Birds, because we felt that we would have a real impact on this community of artisans & in preserving this heritage.
Our advice would be: Travel, meet artisans around the world, get inspired, and do something authentic!
Our jewelry pieces can be worn literally anytime. Some pieces are more delicate (al’sham earrings, al’rulih ring) others are more meant to make a statement (al’baje earrings, al’kayat Malaki bracelet). It really depends on your personal style!
Our favorite piece is Al’Baje ring! It’s so easy to wear! We both wear it every single day. We feel strong and confident when we wear it (and we feel that we’re missing something when we don’t have it on). Also, each pair of Al’baje ring is literally one of a kind – in fact since the chiseling (technique used to draw on silver) is handmade, the drawing varies from one piece to the other.
A book that we loved reading is Girl code. It’s dedicated to female entrepreneurs. The author talks about the importance of always focusing on the positives and believing in yourself until you achieve your ultimate goal.
Being entrepreneurs is super hard, there is no roadmap that you can follow… Sometimes it feels good to read the story of other female entrepreneurs that went over similar struggles! It’s reassuring!