Khan Al Joukh in Beirut Souks, an alternative space for young designers and craftsmen

Khan Al Joukh Invitation

In support of promising, upcoming talent, Solidere launches on the evening of November 24, Khan Al Joukh, a place of exchange and trade for young designers and craftsmen.

Since inception, Solidere’s strategy has been to encourage and endorse the creative industry through the dedication of space and the initiation of programs that develop and showcase art and design in Beirut.

Khan Al Joukh is a 2-year residency program, where space in Beirut Souks is dedicated to talented people. Come meet the collective of designers that include Creative Space ― a fashion school that offers free courses to underprivileged students, an atelier for tailors, and a retail corner, as well as a number of textile and fashion designers ― Chrystele Karam, Salim Azzam, Stephanie Nehme, Sahar Hafda, and Starched.

You are all invited to the opening of Khan Al Joukh on Friday November 24, 2017, at 6:00pm in the Gold Souk, Beirut Souks. 

The residents of Khan Al Joukh:

Chrystele Karam – BlockSfinj

Chrystele Karam is a Lebanese architect, currently living and working in Beirut, Lebanon. Being born to a family with a long industrial background, Karam grew up with an inherited industrial culture, where the idea that national industry is strongly tied to national pride and identity.

BLOCKSFINJ is one of several projects where Karam is building on her family’s industrial legacy, expanding the family-owned production industry that has been passed on for three generations. She is continuously thinking about the relationship between industry and design, and looking for ways to integrate new materials, industrial processes and techniques.


Creative Space

Creative Space Beirut is a free school for fashion design providing quality creative education to talented youth who lack the resources to pursue a degree at increasingly expensive institutions. The innovative school aims to promote equal opportunity into the creative sector and make the design world accessible to those with vision, flair and the driving impulse to create. Creative Space Beirut was founded in June 2011 by Parsons the New School for Design graduate, Sarah Hermez, and her former professor Caroline Simonelli.

Salim Azzam

This brand is a collection of embroidered stories, each with as many voices as there are threads. The hands of the women that bring these stories to life bring with them the voices of my childhood and also the voices of the mountain community.

Fashion is a medium that allows us to transmit our stories while relying on our own techniques.

This fashion line aims at empowering women who are talented embroiders. Each piece represents a different story from my local community and is implemented by these women who come from different villages in Mount Lebanon.

I truly believe all creative work to be empowering, to everyone involved. This project empowers all of us, as we see our creation come to life.

Working on this project has been an adventure, it has taken on a life of it’s own, moving beyond the illustrations themselves, beyond the hard skills, and beyond the fashion. It has been an unspeakable pleasure working with people who do what they love, and who are still connected to their roots



Starch foundation presents STARCHed, a concept store that brings together 12 of the STARCH alumni under one roof. Opening in Beirut Souks, starting November 24.

Founded by Rabih Kayrouz, Tala Hajjar and in collaboration with Solidere, STARCH is a non-profit organization that helps launch Lebanese emerging designers. STARCH is an annual program and a rotation of debut collections where four to six young designers are selected each year. The designers will be guided through the process of developing their collections, as well as promoting them (communication, marketing, branding and press). These collections will then be presented for a period of one year at STARCH boutique. Throughout their one-year at STARCH, the designers also get the chance to participate in design related workshops, seminars and collaborations.

Studio 2

Studio 2 is a shared studio / shop / community space.

It is home to two Lebanese designers who work with textiles and paper.

Studio 2 was conceived as a space for the designers to further explore and expand their creative process, share their work, and engage with the local community.

Notice – Studio 2 would also like to support designers in similar artistic disciplines by opening the space to them to exhibit their products or to host workshops and pop ups. For interested designers, kindly contact the studio directly.

  • Fabric Textile Studio

Fabric is Lebanon’s first textile pattern design studio founded in Beirut, Lebanon by Stephanie Nehme. Stephanie’s career has seen her explore various forms of storytelling: she has previously worked in fashion marketing, started a pilot project to illustrate stories on clothing, and was a freelance writer and journalist for a number of local publications. Stephanie has had a fascination with textiles and patterns from a young age which led her in 2016 to study textile pattern design through professional online courses learning technical and artistic skills and developing her visual storytelling techniques. In the process, she explored artistic mediums that she previously thought were out of reach.

In April 2017, Stephanie launched Fabric. The studio provides modern textile pattern designs to various markets like apparel and home. “Fabric” means create in Arabic (also spelled fabric), but the name is not just a play on words, it also hints to the studio’s culture of creation and play and its intention to engage the local community in the creative process.

  • Sahar’s Paper Objects

Sahar’s love and appreciation for paper started when her brother brought her a small colorful box fro­m a trip to Oman. The box felt wooden but it was actually made out of paper. The experience triggered a fascination in this simple and very basic material that can be transformed through the addition of glue. There was an element of magic in the way a thin and delicate sheet of paper could become a 3-dimensional object. This playful process soon became Sahar’s form of meditation and a time for her to play and fall in love with the textures, colors and smell of paper.

Sahar’s Paper Objects is an exploration of paper and its potential: the way an object’s personality can develop through layering and molding sheets of paper. Its range of playful objects presents a series of individual pieces, each with its own characteristics, flaws and quirks, from animals, lamp shades, brooches, accessories and more.