Home to an abundance of chic boutiques, we wondered around First Mall in Giza, searching for something unique. On the first floor, we were intrigued by a small, glass-fronted shop with no noticeable name. We later learnt it’s called El Horreya – or ‘Freedom’ – and it’s far from just any other standard boutique. The colours and styles used in El Horreya’s collection of clothes, jewellery, handbags and home accessories reflect Egyptian culture; each piece is made locally and a percentage of the profits go directly to charities.
An unusual, soft leather jacket stood out with bright, multicoloured embroidery on the back and leopard print lining. Undoubtedly, it was made from heavy, good quality leather which was reflected in the price tag (2400LE). However, on closer inspection, there was no fastener on the front, which meant the jacket was left open and hanging in a fairly impracticable manner. A denim jacket (990LE) with similar Aztec accents on the breast pocket was also original, whilst a leather waistcoat with fringing was priced at 450LE.
Along with jackets, we also spotted a number of novelty t-shirts, ponchos, shawls and dresses. A deep purple t-shirt with a large, diamanté shisha pipe on the front costs 480LE. An emerald-green maxi dress with metal coin-type beading around the neckline was priced at 1200LE whilst a beautiful, and slightly risqué, jumpsuit with shiny silver detailing on the shorts, would set you back 1800LE.
The shop doesn’t stock a lot of each product and there’s no guarantee that they carry the size you’re looking for. Although this may be slightly disappointing in some cases, it does give an air of exclusivity to the clothes.
El Horreya stocks a humble collection of chunky, statement jewellery; earrings resembling Ramadan lanterns (120LE), spiked cuffs (460LE), an intricate, silver necklace (640LE) and huge, detailed, vintage silver rings – one in the shape of a wolf’s head (280LE) and another shaped like a bird (740LE).
The handbag collection is a little thin, but they do have large, plastic, floral tote bags, several clutch bags – including a black or gold glittery sequin one (450LE) – and leather shoulder bags (1200LE), adorned with a squiggly, ‘khayameya’ pattern – most commonly seen in Ramadan tents.
Other accessories include throws, laptop cases, makeup bags and wooden coasters, as well as large, medium and small sized cushions (150LE-280LE).
El Horreya sells a little bit of everything and because of their vision of combining grassroots culture with fashion, you’re sure to find something a bit different.