Established in 2006 by Nadine Kanso, Bil Arabi has fast become one of the most exciting new brands to emerge from the Middle East.
Lovingly handmade in the UAE, each Bil Arabi piece is a work of art, expressing Nadine’s understanding and appreciation of Arabic calligraphy in a contemporary, universal milieu. Melding her background in graphic design and typography, Nadine created her very first piece of jewellery, a ring named ‘Noon’ in 2006. Entirely handcrafted in 18 carat gold and anointed with a semi-precious stone, the ring that was to be a one-off project became an instant icon.
Nadine’s ode to the region, Noon, is the Arabic equivalent of the letter N; it not only presented a contemporary view of Arabic sensibilities, but also led to an entire collection celebrating all Arabic alphabets. From alphabets came words; ‘Bhibbak’, or ‘I love you’ was the first Arabic phrase Nadine immortalized in Gold.
Today, the collection celebrates the shape and poetry inherent to Arabic alphabets through rings, earrings, bracelets, pendants and one-off, personalised works. In the fine jewellery world of Yellow, White and Rose gold, and dazzling precious and semi-precious stones, Bil Arabi has carved a particular brand of self-expression.
With designs formed from stylized depiction of personal messages and emblazoned with precious stones, handcrafted Bil Arabi pieces are not only modern heirlooms but also offer a fresh view Arabia. In that aspect, the label is an extension of Nadine Kanso, the photographer, who found her creative voice in the streets of Lebanon and UAE, documenting realties that were far removed from the typical media hyped images from the region.
Bespoke projects and collaborative partners include the King of pearls Robert Wan, the Doha Jewellery and Watch Exhibition, Christie’s and Harvey Nichols.