Last Update 14:14
Friday, 22 February 2019

Nina Barky: The beauty of Egypt-inspired body jewelry

Ahram Online talks to the Nina Barky, the young lady behind unconventional body adornments inspired by Egyptian culture

Ingy Deif, Tuesday 10 Feb 2015
Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry
Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry
Views: 5547
Views: 5547

Forget "less is more" when it comes to the intricate jewelry of Nina Barky.

The mass com-turned cinema producer-turned jewelry designer talks to Ahram Online about her flamboyant pieces that have got people buzzing about discovering the beauty of accessorizing their backs, heads, earlobes, arms, and legs with gold and metal.

Nina Bakry
(Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry)

Ahram Online: Nina, tell us more about you?

Nina Barky: Actually, my major studies in the university were not design, but rather Mass Communication, and before I headed to jewelry design, I worked for seven years in cinema production.

AO: How did this passion for jewelry design kick off?

NB: Since I was a little kid and for as long as I can remember, I’ve always been drawn to jewelry.

I used to visit jewelry making workshops in the old Cairo district of Khan El-Phalli to learn different jewelry making skills. That was until I had my son.

At that point I decided to start exploring my first ever artistic passion, jewelry design. So, I enrolled in a Design Studio workshop where I went in depth into jewelry making techniques.

Nina Bakry
(Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry)

AO: Your line is called Nina Barky Body Jewelry; can you explain to us what Body Jewelry is?

NB: There had always been this association between certain body parts and adornment, like wrists, neck, earlobes, etc. but actually, historically people used many of their other parts to accessories with jewelry, and I thought to revive the unconventional and focus on the ignored territories: head, torso, earlobes, leg, the back, etc, the possibilities are just endless!

AO: What are your main sources of inspiration?

NB: Anything that has an obvious or a hidden beauty inspires me. Whether an object, a moment, an artwork, anything.

I am inspired by the work of other artists in any field, as well as by unconventional beauty, something that is not stereotypical. I love history and art and culture. Inspiration is everywhere!

Nina Bakry
(Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry)

AO: Strange, out of the box, exquisite, unconventional: words that have been used describing your style. To what extent do you agree?

NB: All of these descriptions are flattering, and they help solidify my brand identity. They also mean I have to keep pushing myself to always come up with something unconventional and out of the box! Which is fine by me because I love challenging myself, that’s how the best ideas are born, isn't it?

AO: To what extent are your creations affected by Egyptian culture?

NB: I am an Egyptian living in Egypt, so my taste has to have been influenced by Egyptian culture.

My love for history shows in my creations, my love for the ethnic, for the feminine… You know the saying “Less is more”? Well, my pieces are not minimalist or subtle at all, just like our culture, more is more!

Nina Bakry
(Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry)

AO: Where do you see yourself in the future of jewelry makers in Egypt?

NB: I look forward to seeing my brand gain more momentum and to shed more light on the talent in the Egyptian industry worldwide.

People are acknowledging the incredible talents Egyptians have, and I have seen for instance Lady Gaga wearing one of my arm cuffs in Dubai. I want to achieve more not just for me, but for Egypt.

Nina Bakry
(Photo: Courtesy of Nina Bakry)


Short link:


Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

© 2010 Ahram Online.