Designed and handmade by Sima Vizary for the British Museum Hajj 2012 Exhibition in London.
These striking cufflinks represent the Ka’aba when viewed from above during Hajj. The black onyx centre represents the Ka’aba, itself, and the gold the surrounding crowd of pilgrims. The designer's own handwritten caligraphy reads: Mikat, Mecca, Mina, Plain of Arafat, Muzdalifa, Plain of Mina, and Mecca again, the seven stopping locations for a pilgrim on Hajj.
Onyx is a banded variety of chalcedony (a form of quartz) and comes in a wide variety of colors. Most commonly, specimens of onyx contain bands of both black and white, though the word “onyx” means black and the pieces in these cufflinks are all in the traditional black. In modern times, gold is mined all over the world, but in the old days, much of it was mined from what is now Saudi Arabia. Gold often symbolizes power, strength, wealth, warmth, happiness, love, hope, optimism, intelligence, justice, balance, perfection, and divinity.