Sunday April 7, 2019 ــ By: Kismat Mokhtar
Every little girl’s dream is to become a princess. Some actually believe they are. They dress up like one, watch princesses’ movies, know their names by heart, and even have playdates with other princesses. They buy their products, eat their cakes, wear their crowns, and then they grow up and princesses become part of their childhood memories. Nourhan Rabie was not an exception. She also loved to dress up like Disney princesses. But unlike other girls, Nourhan decided to keep living her dream. And by time, her passion with princesses grew not just to become an obsession, but a lifestyle and a business.
She launched her jewelry brand Ferimina, named after Gabriel García Márquez’s heroine in Love in the Age of Cholera. Since its launch in 2015, Ferimna brand evolved to include lace gloves, hats, fascinators, vintage dolls, accessories, pocket watches, post cards, and even fairytales and classic novels. Nourhan is also working on her first Victorian inspired fashion collection.
Nourhan studies European Civilization in college. The Victorian Era in particular bedazzled her. She became an avid historical movie watcher, especially movies about queens and royalties. Their silk dresses, hats, jewelry, embroidered handkerchiefs, hand fans, lace gloves and parasols fascinated her, and propelled her towards bringing forward her dreams of reliving this era.
Visiting Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin, Germany, was the turning point in her life. Everything she saw inside the palace inspired her; the architecture, interior, colors, paintings, crystals, furniture, and most importantly, the collection of dresses and jewelry exhibited in the palace’s museum. Upon her return to Egypt, she found a tailor who sewed her first Victorian style dress. When she first showed him the design, he had doubts about its style and functionality, but when she tried it on, he was as excited with his creation as much as she was. It was a dress she cherished. She wore it when she went out with her fiancé – who later became her husband – on her first birthday after their engagement.
Since then, Nourhan has adopted this style of fashion. She finds the styles for her dresses online, and adds her personal touch, to become functional in today’s world. She is quite comfortable to go out in public or to college wearing her Victorian inspired clothes, in spite of the curious eyes following her in the streets. Her sight raises many eyebrows, and often expose her to sarcasm and mockery from passerby, but she doesn’t pay much attention to them. “People will mock you and harass you no matter what you wear. I hear them laugh at me, and I just ignore them. What is important to me is to live my life the way I like it, and I am not doing anything wrong,” she said.
Fermina Jewelry started when she couldn’t find matching accessories for her dresses, and the ones she found exceeded her budget. Hence, she decided to create her own. Inspired by vintage pieces she saw in movies and online, Nourhan designed unique and exclusive jewelry and accessories. She started her page on Facebook where she markets her products. She imports her material and custom make her jewelry, gloves and hats. She produces limited number of pieces to maintain their uniqueness, as she wants every woman to own a special piece.
Nourhan joined forces with her husband who also shares her passion for this era, and together, they are working towards creating her dream; a Victorian World. She dreams to open an antique gallery that would include not just antique and vintage clothes and accessories, but also paintings, dolls, china, furniture and books.
Financially, she is still unable to fulfil this dream yet. But meanwhile, she is working from home, and increasing her base of followers. With over 70,000 followers on Facebook, Nourhan is content with the success of her project.
So, little princesses’ dreams do come true after all.
Photos courtesy of Nourhan Rabie
Check Ferimina Facebook page here
***If you liked this article, don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter and receive our articles by email.