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Hamsa Alek - The Story

HAMSA - the hand symbol meaning “5” - is a middle eastern sign of good fortune, good luck and protection. The symbol has been adopted by many cultures in the Mediterranean, Middle East and North Africa - Morocco being the heart and inspiration of my designs.

Judeo-Arabic (the language that was spoken in my home) and Arabic speaking people alike, wish their friends “HAMSA ALEK” meaning “HAMSA ON YOU” (ALEK being short for alekum). This phase is seen as wishing good fortune, good luck and spiritual protection on the recipient of that blessing.

This business is the passion child for myself, a woman that grew up in a Jewish French Moroccan home rich with tradition, foods, and a unique culture. I'm here to share that love for Hamsa - the symbol around my home, neck and heart for as long as I could remember. My dear loving Mother still puts her hand on my face and says "Hamsa Alek!". This is where the name came from. From my Mama Titi. 

The idea of evil eye, eyes of envy or jealousy, is something that many cultures share.  It is the idea that someone can intentionally or unintentionally cause the Universe - G-d - the Oneness that connects us all, to question whether you truly deserve what others envy us for.  I'm not sure if it's making much sense but, it's as if you look at someone and think "why do they have X and I have worked so hard and only have Y?". It triggers an "accounting" of sorts.

Do they truly deserve that? Maybe the Universe needs to balance the scales a bit and throw some more challenges their way. The truth is, people only see the outside, especially now, when the images we project to the outside world via social media are just the curated "best sides" of ourselves. We could all use some spiritual protection can't we?... From all the negativity out there? We should be cheering each other on, not feeling envy or jealousy. It may not be intentional but the impact can be very negative. In fact, jealousy and envy work the exact opposite you want it to. 

The "Hamsa" symbol, the Hand, is a shield to that "evil eye" or "ayin hara". Spiritual protection against the evil eye and, I would propose, making ourselves cognizant of how we look at others ourselves. A reminder that jealousy does the opposite and we have and are, exactly where we should be. Often we see Hamsas combined with an eye or a fish design. The eye symbolizes always having an eye open, watching and seeing what is around you, and the protection against the "Evil Eye". Likewise, as with the eye theme, a Fish's eyes never close so it is also a symbol of a "watchful eye".   

So, here I am, currently in the next chapter of my life. I turned 50 in January 2021. 2020 was a tough year for all of us with a global pandemic. It was also the year I lost my father, My Papa Moise z"l. It changed me more than anything in my life. The mysticism that both my parents passed down to me remains strong in my heart.  It inspires me.  It's my past with my present. It's a perfect blend of my eye for vintage style and my modern sense of style, mixed with my connection to my heritage. I've always loved HAMSAs. I hope you enjoy the pieces I've designed and curated from around the globe.  

Most of the pieces are limited production, so get them while you can, because I have a lot of designs and ideas to bring you in the years to come. Thank you for your support. I'm excited and grateful to have you on this journey with me. 

Deborah Elfassy

HAMSA ALEK!   Peace Love Protection Luck

Follow us on IG: @hamsa.alek