Officially launched in 2015, the brand’s three founders – Hamad bin Shaiban, Abdulla BelJafla and Bushra bint Darwish – joined forces in 2013 to create cutting edge modern jewels inspired by the outgoing history of their Emirati culture.
Gafla's founders Hamad bin Shaiban, Bushra bint Darwish and Abdulla BelJafla
Today Gafla operates from its showroom in the Dubai Design District, d3, presenting its own collections alongside the Gafla Bespoke service, which translates clients' own ideas into unique fine jewellery commissions.
The current Gafla collections are all based on historical Arabian themes that have been sleekly reinterpreted for today’s international jewellery collector. A classic example is one of their most popular collections, the Bahar line, inspired by the Gulf’s sea and its traditional pearling industry and featuring jewels set with pearls or corals in fluid tasseled designs.
A tasseled pearl necklace from the "Bahar" collection
The Jum’ah collection is infused with the colour and fun of a Friday’s celebrations with friends and family. It features ring, pendant and earring designs each set to the centre with a diamond enclosed by coloured gemstones including citrine, amethyst and peridot. Meanwhile the Thumani jewels reinterpret the central role of geometry in Islamic Art with stackable octagonal-shaped rings.
The Jum'ah rings set with peridot, citrine and amethyst petals and a diamond centre
Each founder brings separate but clearly complementary skills to Gafla, which encompass jewellery design, gemology and communications. Yet when it comes down to deciding the theme of a new collection, the three sit down and discuss ideas together. “It’s very difficult choosing which designs to pursue,“ Abdulla explains. “There is so much inspiration. But we decide on new pieces as a team, as well as developing the existing collections.”
Stackable geometric rings from Gafla's "Thumani" collection
The key behind Gafla’s success appears to be their skill in creating stylish jewels that also meet the versatile demands from today’s wearer. The Merwad collection, for example, draws on the traditional Arabian perfume wand and its curved bottle. The resulting designs are available in various sizes and golds with different gems – suiting any taste and easily worn on their own or layered together.
Gold and diamond "Merwad" pendant by Gafla
In addition to the d3 showroom, Gafla's collections are also available from Robinsons Festival City – both fitting locations for a brand focused on the role that inspired contemporary jewels can play in the city’s future.