Beachroad Magazine meet up with Sahar Wahbeh a self-proclaimed idealist without illusions, Sahar is the Founder and Creative Director of Dumyé, a company handcrafting beautiful, personal and purposeful cloth dolls. For every doll purchased a doll is gifted to an orphan and vulnerable child through an art workshop.
It is Dumyé’s mission to bring love and light into the lives of both our children and the children who have not been spoken for. It is Sahar’s belief that through design we have the power to shape our culture for the better and through Dumyé she is putting those ideals to work. In 2013 Dumyé may have began as a living lesson to her daughter but today Dumyé’s dolls live in more than 22 countries spanning the globe, partnerships have been established with some of the worlds most exclusive retailers and dolls have been gifted to more than 1,000 orphans and refugees.
Prior to launching Dumyé, Sahar was an award winning designer and branding consultant for more than a decade, from New York City to Dubai.
Where do you like to eat, shop an socialize in our community? //
Kite Beach, Maria Bonita, Comptoir 102, Garderobe and Saucette.
Kite Beach, 2 Al Nessnass Street, Dubai.
Maria Bonita, Umm Al Sheif Road, Dubai.
Comptoir 102, Villa 102 Beach Rd Jumeirah 1, Dubai.
Garderobe, Villa 590, Road, Dubai.
Saucette, The Galleria Mall, Al Wasl Road, Dubai.
What inspired you to start Dumye and any challenges involved.? //
It was the holidays and I wanted to gift my daughter something really special, something I had hoped would one day become symbolic of her childhood – her very first doll. I searched everywhere but nothing captured my heart and her spirit. So, I gathered my materials, propped my mother’s vintage sewing machine onto an old ping-pong table and got to work. However, I didn’t decide to turn doll making into an enterprise until I realized the incredible opportunity I had to use these dolls as a force for good. Dumyé stands as more than a doll company – it is a living lesson to my daughter, about the importance of showing compassion for our fellow man, the necessity of respecting mother nature and the understanding that life’s greatest gift is actually in the giving, Dumyé was born.
What is your take on Dubai as a city and its growth.? //
Dubai is a melting pot. There are so many different nationalities here but we eat each others foods and celebrate each others holidays. I love that.
Sahar answers the Beachroad Magazine Q&A //
NAME? // Sahar Wahbeh.
YOUR FIRST JOB? // Doing odd jobs for my parents commercial printing company.
YOUR CURRENT OCCUPATION? // Founder and Creative Director of Dumyé
YOUR GREATEST LOVE? // My Family.
YOUR GREATEST FEAR? // Something bad happening to someone in my family.
WHAT IS YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY? // I cannot remember.
WHO IS YOUR ROLE MODEL AND WHY? // I admire many people each for very specific reasons. For example Maya Angelou for being so in tune with her self and true to her self. Blake Mycoskie for proving doing good was a sustainable business model. My parents, for showing me the value of hard work and grit.
WHAT WAS THE LAST GIFT YOU GAVE SOMEONE? // My dear friend’s daughter just turned 3 and I gifted her Little Foot, one of Dumyé’s limited edition dolls.
IF YOU WERE 80 YEARS OLD WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE YOUR CHILDREN? // Worry is wasteful. Just live in the moment and enjoy it.
YOUR WORST TRAIT? // My worst trait also happens to be my best trait. I am an all or nothing kinda gal.
THE WORST TRAIT IN OTHERS THAT GETS YOU MAD? // Greed.
WHO WOULD PLAY YOUR PART IN A MOVIE? // I have no idea. People always say I look like some famous Indian actress… maybe her.
FAVOURITE MUSIC? // Acoustic. Folk. Ethereal. Chill Out.
LAST RECORD YOU BOUGHT? // I can’t remember especially since I am addicted to Spotify. But I do remember the first albums I ever bought: Janet Jackson and Blind Melon.
FAVOURITE BOOK? // Erica Wilsons ‘Embroidery Book’. I picked up a copy in a second hand store in the Old Town of Clifton, where I grew up. It has so many beautiful pictures and stitches inside. I revisit it often.
LAST BOOK YOU BOUGHT? // Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg.
WHAT INSPIRES YOU? // Kindness, my daughter, the creative process.
THE CLOSEST YOU HAVE COME TO DEATH? // My husband might disagree but… on our honeymoon. We were in St. Barts and decided to go jet skiing around the island. The only problem was the water was super choppy and we pounded wave after wave. I was fairly certain we were going to be lost at sea and eaten by sharks. Obviously I lived to tell the tale.
FAVOURITE DESTINATION? // New York City.
LEAST FAVOURITE DESTINATION? // Trying to park at the US Embassy here in Dubai.
HOW DO YOU RELAX? // Good music, hot shower & sleep
WHY DUBAI? // First because I fell in love with a guy who lived here (my husband) and I have been here for 10 years because I eventually fell in love with the city.
ARE YOU SPORTY? // Nope.
BEACH OR DESERT? // Beach. URBAN OR RURAL? // Urban.
CATS OR DOGS? // Dogs.
COFFEE OR TEA? // Tea (I have never even tasted Coffee and I have no desire to).
WHAT MAKES YOU LAUGH? // Seeing my daughter laugh.
WHAT MAKES YOU CRY? // Most movies.
YOUR MESSAGE? // Have the courage to fulfil your potential, marry your passions with your life’s work, respect mother nature, show compassion to your fellow man and know the greatest gift we have in this life is in the giving.