Maryam Omar & Sisters
Creators of Artisanal Jewelry
Maryam Omar and her two sisters, Khatera and Freshta, are the owners of an artisanal jewelry business in Kabul. As a family-run enterprise, they take pride in authenticity and remain true to their origins as evident in their designs. This women-driven business believes in social responsibility and ensures that products are sustainably made in a healthy work environment with fair wages for those they employ.
Maryam, known as the “designer sister”, creates jewelry collections with clean, minimalist lines at their in-house workshop. Her striking designs are handcrafted by a talented group of local artisans who use traditional techniques and select only the highest quality materials for each piece. By combining metals such as 925 silver with locally sourced semi precious stones, the resulting collections are modern and distinctive.
Photo: Courtesy of Maryam Omar
Meet some of the talented artisans they work with:
Samiullah: Certified Master of Gem Cutting
Samiullah is 31 years old and the father of 4 children. He was born in Peshawar and immigrated to Kabul 5 years ago. Samiullah learned gem cutting as a child where he had to work in a gem cutting factory in Peshawar. He was unable to attend school and has seen a lot of financial hardships since he was a child.
Despite being a certified master of gem cutting, he still hardly manages to make ends meet.
His dream is to be able to afford a house for his family in Kabul and not have to go back to Peshawar. He dreams for peace in Afghanistan, so that all his siblings and cousins can come back home.
He hopes that everyone realizes that Afghanistan has a wealth of natural gems like ruby, emerald, tourmaline, aquamarine, kunzite, citrine, peridot, amethyst and, of course, the unique lapis lazuli. He says, “Please, discover them and buy them from the source, from the mountains of Afghanistan where they are born.”
Farhad: Electrician turned Jewelry Maker
Farhad is a 24-year-old jeweler who studied as an electrician while working part time with a family member as a jewelry repairer for 3 years.
After completing his education, he realized that he is more interested in jewelry making and does not want to have a career as an electrician. He started his training in the same workshop where he currently crafts jewelry.
He loves to travel around Afghanistan and wishes one day Afghanistan will be safe enough for his family to travel and see the beauty of their country.
Kamran: A Jeweler with a Love for Business
Kamran is a 21-year-old Business Administration student and a part time jeweler who loves jewelry making.
He likes to become an internationally recognized jewelry/ businessman. Therefore, he always asks for the hardest tasks and the jobs others refuse to do.
Alongside jewelry making, he asks to do logistics, quality control, deliveries and everything else with a huge smile on his face.
His salary provides for his university tuition and transportation.
Shukrullah: A Bright and Energetic Artisanal Jeweler
Shukrullah is 23 years old, and began making jewelry 5 years ago after his father took him to his friend’s jewelry making workshop so that he could learn a skill to help his family financially.
Being the eldest son of the family, he has a huge responsibility to help his father provide for their family.
He is a bright and energetic young man with a can do attitude.
He is currently saving his every penny so that he can get married. Afghan weddings are extravagant and expensive. He feels it will take him a couple of years until he has enough savings to marry his bride.
Written by ShopatMAP
Products crafted by these artisans: