The simple answer is that “Meqnes” is an homage to Meknes, the Moroccan city where our Founder and CEO, Kamal Jahid, was born and spent his childhood.
Meknes is an old city, with roots dating back to the 9th century AD. Its name comes from a Berber tribe that lived there. Soon, it was settled by other tribes and cultures.
The cultural influences on Meknes crossed borders from its founding; it’s overlooked by the nearby Ancient Roman city of Volubilis on a hill nearby.
Meknes is famous for its city gates
These are old stone archways, many still decorated with zellij tiles. The most famous gateway in Meknes is Bab Mansour, constructed in 1732. The gate is so magnificent that this is inscribed on the tiles on its façade:
"I am the most beautiful gate in Morocco. I’m like the moon in the sky. Property and wealth are written on my front."
Meknes’ gates are what inspired our company logo.
It’s a little sign of our beginnings that easily blends into everything we do. When you go out into the world with one of our accessories, you’re carrying Meknes with you; we hope its beauty, liveliness, and diversity inspire you every day.
On the aesthetic side of things, the zellij tiles of Meknes are also an inspiration to us.
These colorful ceramic tiles in geometric patterns were created in Morocco in the 10th century. We love their possibilities, from flowers, to stars, to complex motifs. You’ll find our own, signature Meqnes geometric pattern in the linings of our leather bags and laptop sleeve. And of course, the pattern takes center stage on our silk scarves and Solidarity Safety Masks.
The bright colors and myriad of possible combinations allows us to stay true to our roots while giving you countless possibilities to express your personal style, with palettes that range from bold red, to cool blue, to subtle browns and blacks.
But there’s more to our story than aesthetics.
Like many cities, Meknes continues to be a place where people of many different backgrounds and stories mix and live together. This is what inspires us the most.
Meqnes may have its design origins in the arches and zellij tiles of an old Moroccan city. It may have taken its inspiration from the skilled leather craftsmanship that the nearby city of Fez is famous for.
But we’re also inspired by vintage European style and artisans. One of our co-founders was born in Morocco; the other, David, was born in the United States. Our company itself was founded by the two in our current headquarters of Warsaw, Poland.
We love the fact that our accessories are used and worn by people around the globe. In a world where prejudice and racism are still all too present, we want to celebrate diversity and unity in our eye-catching designs.
That’s what Meqnes is about. It starts with an old city in Morocco and spans outward to every corner of the world.
We’re proud to be the Meqnes Family. And we invite you to join us.
Read Next: The Story of MEQNES