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This Dubai Pop-Up By Lebanese Lifestyle Brand Vanina is Not to Be Missed

Photo: Courtesy of Vanina

“We have always felt quite close to Dubai,” founders of Vanina, Tatiana Fayad and Joanne Hayek shared with Vogue Arabia, which is why it is no surprise that the Lebanese designers have decided to bring a new experience from their brand to the bustling city. On March 10 and 11, Vanina will be hosting a two-day pop-up at the Villa Aumèdan in Jumeirah, aiming to connect with the community in Dubai and share their “work and aspirations with its fascinating crowd.” 

Vanina is a brand that grew out of a shared passion between two friends and continues to reflect that desire for the synergy between fashion and sustainability. “A passion to create beauty out of everyday objects” is how they describe this founding philosophy. What started as a jewelry line in 2007, repurposing old devalued Lebanese coins into exquisite pieces has now become a label that is distributed internationally and has over 70 people involved in its production – from skilled local artisans to women in need of financial stability.

Tatiana Fayad and Joanne Hayek. Photo: Courtesy of Vanina

What is perhaps the most important part of the Vanina identity is their dedication to promoting local community development and ensuring that craftsmanship in the region is both preserved and revived. At the core of this process is the careful cultivation of the relationship between the brand and its artisans. “The Vanina family of artisans is a network of friendship,” share the designers. “A friendship, one of the aspects of the brand that is the closest to our hearts, and which, in some way, sparked the very start of Vanina.”

While Fayad and Hayek work with generational artisans skilled in their individual crafts and give them the chance to develop as an independent micro-enterprise, they have also established a training program for women in need of financial stability. The open recruitment program developed in collaboration with local NGOs gives an opportunity to women that have no prior knowledge or skill in handicrafts and manufacturing. With Vanina, these women “are trained to progressively evolve from apprentices to master artisans able to produce highly intricate pieces, and provide training to future newcomers.”

Photo: Courtesy of Vanina.

The elegant pieces that these artisans create are often inspired by the city of Beirut and Lebanon as a whole. Fayad and Hayek confirm that “Beirut – and Lebanon – is our main source of inspiration. Its landscape, its heritage, its people, its terroir, its crafts, its culture, are an endless source of energy and creativity for us,” before adding that “the hardship that it has gone through, and still goes through today makes us even more passionate and committed to our mission to contribute to its sustainable development.”

Collections from Vanina seem to mirror the celebration of creativity and energy that the duo mentioned. Visitors to the pop-up in Dubai can expect to see on display playful staples and statement silhouettes crafted through the brand’s signature material works and techniques. “We have curated a selection of our products that stand out: a carefully selected mix of eveningwear, daily wear, bags, and jewelry, produced in limited editions for the event,” said the founders.

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