10 Minutes With Jewellery Designer Elisa Sednaoui

6 min read

Hot on the heels of her recent collaboration with Egyptian jewellery brand Azza Fahmy, we talk to the stylish social entrepreneur about history, heritage and the importance of family

Let’s start with your diverse background, which is rooted in Italian, French and Egyptian heritage. How do you think this has shaped you as a person?

My mother is Italian and my father is French- Egyptian with Syrian origins, so growing up I lived in all these three countries. This exposure led to my familiarity with similar, yet different communication styles — somewhere between direct and indirect, for example — and different cultural perspectives and approaches. I consider myself a product of ‘globalisation’: my identity is crafted from the mixture and juxtaposition of these cultures, with each part being inseparable from the other. Growing up sometimes it was hard to feel like I was ‘enough’, but today I’m so grateful for this diversity in context and culture.

What makes you feel most confident?

Integrity and coherence.

What do you love most about working with Azza Fahmy?

I love the fact that this is an Egyptian women-run business, and the story behind the brand, with the pioneer founder Azza and her two daughters working to make the vision an ever-growing reality. It’s a beautiful success story of family, values, taste and entrepreneurship.

What similarities do you see between yourself and the brand?

Attention to detail, family values and celebration of traditions while keeping a contemporary outlook.

What pieces would we find in your jewellery box?

Simple yet strong pieces. Mostly I wear gold, sometimes mixed with silver. Always timeless pieces, some vintage, and with carefully selected stones. I also love items that are stackable.

What’s the one skincare product you couldn’t live without?

More than a skincare product, it’s a step in my skincare routine — face fitness as taught by Bovisaj. I’ve seen tremendous results in emerging wrinkles and puffiness.

What’s your favourite way to work out and make sure you stay strong?

I alternate weightlifting sessions and Pilates.

What do you do to relax?

Take time for me, be it reading, thinking, walking, working out or having a hot bath. I also started cryotherapy again.

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

Life happens for you, not to you. Time is a result of our perception, and we can consciously change it. We must be an energetic match for the things we wish to see in our lives. Lastly, without fuss, a lot can be accomplished.

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