Author: Marriam Mossalli, [email protected]
Wednesday 1 June 2011
However, regardless of which category you may fall into, the day you see the bride walk down in her stunning white gown, dripped in sparkling jewels and glowing with the promise of “happily ever after,” it all becomes worth it.
How beautiful the bride looks, which designer made her gown and how many carats decorate her quickly become the inevitable topics of chatter among guests. That’s why attention-to-detail is of the utmost importance — no pressure, my June brides!
Luckily for Saudi brides, there is Damas, the Middle East’s leading international jewelry and watch retailer. Damas has recently unveiled its new “Bridal Festival,” which represents the launch of 350 luxurious bridal “Zaffa” diamond Jewelry designs, designed exclusively for Saudi Arabia. The company, which has 33 stores located throughout the Kingdom, has designed the new sets of luxurious bridal jewelry with the aim to leverage the 20 percent annual growth in the Saudi Arabian wedding industry.
Arab News got an exclusive interview with Hassan Al Kibbi, Damas’ deputy general manager for Saudi Arabia, to answer a few questions on the trends of today’s blushing brides.
Hassan Al Kibbi: Actually, it’s a mix of both. While some people purchase sets and they are completely satisfied, other customers ask for alterations so that the jewelry is a better fit for their body. A lady’s body shape actually makes a lot of difference with regards to what type of jewelry to wear. The measurements and the proportions of the body and the jewelry have to work together to create a beautiful appearance. Think of jewelry selection as the same way that you dress. The jewelry should be in harmony with the design of the person. The Damas’ sales staff will happily assist with this when purchasing bridal jewelry. There are also a lot of requests from both brides and grooms to design their own rings and bridal jewelry.
HK: It is a mix, as there are multiple levels behind the consumer purchase rationale. On one level, brides want to buy jewelry based on its look and feel. A wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event, and the jewelry should be absolutely perfect for the bride. On another level, status comes into play, so the jewelry often represents the status of the bride and groom’s family, especially as a wedding is not so much a union between two people, but rather between two families. So, for example, while the jewelry design might be simple, the sea of diamonds covering the bride’s neck might be the best symbol of opulence.
HK: Although it’s a purely personal choice, most brides in Saudi Arabia still prefer white diamonds. This is because they match the white bridal gowns, and they are more affordable than colored diamonds.
We are noticing that a lot of brides are integrating colored stones along with the diamonds into their bridal sets. There are three main reasons why a bride would like to wear colored stones. Firstly, it might be something personal, such as a lucky color, a birthstone or maybe she wants a green emerald to match her eyes. Secondly, the stones could match elements in the wedding dress. Thirdly, integrating colored stones with diamonds usually reduces the price of the jewelry set.
HK: We have launched 350 diamond jewelry designs exclusive for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as part of our Saudi Bridal Festival. So, there is definitely a huge range in terms of variety of motifs and themes. We have, however, three main products that are really popular:
The stunning 18kt white/rose gold and diamond set consists of a huge 26ct of diamonds and is designed to represent unity in marriage. The design blends white with rose gold to produce a vintage-looking set that makes the bride truly glow.
Our diamond set is inspired by bows and swirls, which are often key elements in a bride’s wedding gown. The romantic 18kt white gold diamond four-piece set has a very eye-catching design, as it falls slightly off center, emphasizing the elegant neckline of the bridal gown.
Damas’ pearl and diamond bridal necklace is designed to symbolize purity and pure beauty for the new bride, and looks stunning against any white wedding dress. The whole set consists of five large white freshwater pearls that are surrounded by 9.6ct baguette and round cut diamonds with elegant swirls in a strikingly feminine design.
HK: Our bridal collection is timeless and ageless, and we know that many people who purchase a “Zaffa” piece usually pass it onto their daughters when they marry or get it remodeled to wear everyday. We research emerging trends in fashion and jewelry and then create products that will appeal to all consumers. We also offer different price points to suit different budgets. The huge range in terms of diamond quality and color is a good example — you can go up and down the budget scale depending on your preference, and you will always walk away with a beautiful piece of jewelry.
HK: We always say that we are not selling a bridal jewelry set; instead, we are selling memories. We have been in the jewelry business for over 100 years and we are the leading jewelry retailer in the Middle East region, so we pride ourselves in the Damas Quality.
Each of our jewelry sets at Damas takes anywhere from six to 12 months to complete, so this gives an indication of the intricacy and quality of each piece. We have an extremely rigorous system of quality control, which includes each piece of jewelry going through more than four different quality control checkpoints. We guarantee that what we specify for each jewelry piece is 100 percent correct and we also exchange or upgrade based on the terms of our policies.
As the bridal jewelry is quite delicate, we offer our customers tips on how to look after the jewelry. We offer the “Damas Promise,” as our high quality is the cornerstone of our success.