Original, eclectic and balanced, Jude Benhalim’s home in Cairo mirrors her artistic expression in jewellery design. Her new apartment exudes the same energy and affable charm she brings to the table
On a warm autumn day in Cairo, jewellery designer Jude Benhalim invites us into her sunlit apartment, in one of the city’s trendiest neighbourhoods, New Cairo. Her work, as seen on celebrities such as Kendall Jenner, Chrissy Teigen and Adriana Lima, is inspired by the architecture of the city she was raised in. Her new home shows similar influences, drawn from art and design. “Growing up here, with the city’s rich history, vibrant culture and splendid architecture has shaped my artistic perspective and offered inspiration. In my work, you can see the echoes of Cairo’s ancient beauty and cultural diversity. The city’s bustling markets, ornate mosques and majestic Nile River all find expression in my designs. I often draw inspiration from traditional Middle Eastern jewellery making techniques, such as filigree, enamelling and intricate metalwork, infusing them with a contemporary twist. Likewise, my home reflects the essence of Cairo. The interior design embraces the city’s eclectic blend of old and new, combining traditional elements with modern aesthetics,” says Jude.
Filled with natural light and bright accents, her three-bedroom apartment is flushed with colour. Natural elements, organic textures and materials such as wood and stone form a common thread that seamlessly weaves an atmosphere of peace and comfort throughout the space. “I would describe it as a blend of modern and eclectic. I believe that one’s home should reflect their personality, so I’ve incorporated pieces that resonate with me on a personal level. My personality is reflected in the vibrant colours, a passion for local art and culture and a desire for a space that feels warm, inviting and inspiring,” she says. “I also incorporate elements of global inspiration, such as statement art pieces, textiles and decorative objects. These elements come together in a harmonious and visually engaging environment for me,” she adds.
Having founded her eponymous brand as a teenager, Jude has come to realise the value of perseverance, resilience and balance in work and life. Being raised in an environment that valued creativity and craftsmanship further encouraged her to push her boundaries and come into her own. “Throughout my childhood, I was surrounded by artistic influences and encouraged to explore my own artistic expression. My mother worked in fashion and my father is an architect — this explains why my designs feature both contemporary and fashionable aesthetics,” she says. Today, this principle of creativity and balance spills into the spaces in her home. She focuses on elements such as craftsmanship, attention to detail and the ability to tell a story: “Just like in jewellery design, I believe that each piece in a home should have a purpose and evoke emotion. I seek inspiration from textures, forms and materials found in jewellery-making and translate those into the design choices for my home interiors. This approach ensures that both my jewellery designs and my home reflect a consistent artistic vision.”
When selecting design elements for her home, she prefers materials and textures that offer a sense of tactile richness and visual depth. “For example, I might incorporate velvet upholstery that adds a luxurious touch, or curated art on the wall that creates visual interest,” says Jude. “Combining materials and textures allows me to create a multidimensional and visually engaging environment. Ultimately, I aim to strike a balance between comfort, functionality and aesthetic appeal.”
When working from home, Jude saw the need to create spaces and nooks that inspire her to create. “One such space is my lounge area which is designed to inspire creativity and foster focus. The curated art on the walls, the presence of natural light, and the overall ambience of the space all contributes to a productive work environment. Additionally, I find that the serene atmosphere of my balcony or a cosy reading nook also inspires me during work-from-home days, as they provide a change of scenery and promote a sense of tranquility,” she says.
And that same tranquility extends outdoors on to her balcony and private terrace: “For the balcony, I plan to incorporate lush greenery and soft lighting to create a serene oasis amid the bustling neighbourhood. I will use natural materials like wood and rattan to add warmth and texture, while also incorporating Middle Eastern-inspired decorative elements such as intricate metalwork. As for the private terrace, I see it as a versatile space that can be used for relaxation, entertaining guests and even as a source of inspiration for my design work. I intend to create a lounging area and perhaps a small dining area. I will use plants, flowers and natural elements to bring a sense of serenity and beauty to the space,” she says.
However, it’s not just about visual appeal. Jude is just as astute about functionality and purpose.“Design and aesthetics are important to me but I also give equal weight to practicality. I strive to strike a balance between creating a visually appealing space and ensuring it is functional and well-suited to my lifestyle. The overall design should enhance daily living while reflecting my personal style and preferences,” she says. Her home is a sanctuary for her — a place of safety, security, and belonging. This is where she returns to unwind, recharge and find solace from the demands of work and everyday life.“It’s a place where I can surround myself with cherished possessions, sentimental objects and elements that bring me joy, creating a true haven that resonates with my soul. Shop pieces from Jude Benhalim here