El Warshah: Creating Beautiful Décor From Driftwood
This Egyptian startup is offering exquisitely personalized and warm works of interior art for your happy home.
You don’t think much of a stray piece of driftwood in the grand scheme of things, nor do you think there’s much potential in a discarded tree branch or a few planks leftover from construction. To the grand majority, scrap wood is nothing more than refuse, to be cast away without much of a second thought. But to the creative people over at El Warshah, it’s much more than that.
Officially launched in May of 2016, El Warshah create mesmerizing, highly creative pieces of furniture and interior décor that are more than just home fixtures, but deeply personalized expressions of individuality, with each piece being a work of art in and of itself.
“Each piece we craft is tailored to the specifications and ideas each person who comes to us has in mind,” said El Warshah co-founder Fady Nagi. “We treat our crafts like they’re our own children, taking as long as they need and as much effort required to bring out an item that is unique.”
Nagi, alongside co-owner Hazem Ihab, operate in their own little workspace where they work with the wood and other materials, and they dry the wood on their rooftop naturally; a process that can take anywhere from a few months to a year or more.
El Warshah currently operate online, but the owners have hopes of a fully functional workshop and a dedicated drying room somewhere in the future, though for now, those interested in their dazzling creations can get in contact with them via social media to get down to brass tacks.
“It’s important to get the customer’s insights and ideas to make their piece truly one of a kind; sometimes the discussion can be as simple as a few messages on Facebook, but more often, it’s a full meeting to hash things out, and we sometimes feel like it’s necessary to visit the customer’s home to get a feel to the dimensions and design they have in mind,” Nagi explained.
If you’re wondering about the going rates for their work, it varies according to the design you have in mind; a simple but elegant driftwood and rope lamp can go for EGP 500, while some of their bigger, more elaborate tables for example can go for EGP 15,000 or even 20,000.
“The price tag might seem daunting, but think of it this way; you can get something uninspired but functional for that same price and more, but something so personalized and with this level of quality? It’s more than fair.”
Nagi is a practicing dentist, while Ihab, a mass communications graduate, also has a full time occupation in his field; but both men are passionate about their prodigious craft and are firm believers in the concept of tapping into your creative side and allowing it to grow.
“We were just walking along the shore in Nuweba and we’d see these pieces of driftwood, and we saw potential in them for something far better.”
Despite the many hurdles facing young, inspiring craftsmen and artists in Egypt, Nagi is a strong proponent of investing in your innate creativity and has aspirations for a better future for creatives, telling us, “I wish we had a sort of warehouse/craft space in Egypt where anyone and everyone could come in and just do their thing with other creative individuals.”
If you feel like having your own unique work of artistic décor, check out the El Warsha Facebook page for more details