The KHAMAMA team with Nathan and Amos Hornstein
The KHAMAMA team with Nathan and Amos Hornstein

KHAMAMA is a family-owned artistic enterprise, whose inspiration was born out of a family story. The grandfather of the founders was a draper who travelled through Europe, from Milan to Paris and everywhere in between. On a hot summer day when their mother was 9 years old, their grandfather took her to a business meeting. It was a stuffy room in an old building where his private client had an office. Nobody remembers who he was, but one thing was recalled: an entire wall was covered with framed butterflies – something their mother had never seen before. Calmly sitting in a chair she studied all the wonderful specimen. As the meeting came to a close, the mysterious man thanked their mother for her patience and asked her to choose the most beautiful butterfly as a gift for herself. There was one butterfly majestically shimmering in the afternoon sun. Awed by its iridescent beauty of the exceptional gift, she hid it well and kept it as a surreal childhood memory.

Art Chess by Khamama
KHAMAMA X Purling London Art Chess ‘Morpho’

Decades later, when her three sons were exploring the attic they rediscovered this butterfly. They identified the specimen as a gorgeous Rajah Brooke which was worth a fortune at the time their mother received it: About 13.000 DM (German Mark or an estimated $34.000 in today’s money). 

This butterfly sparked the idea of KHAMAMA.

Fascinated by the beauty and exclusiveness of precious butterflies the brothers aim to bring stunningly beautiful artefacts to the world.

KHAMAMA X Purling London Art Chess ‘Noctua’
KHAMAMA X Purling London Art Chess ‘Noctua’
The creation of butterfly marquetry in the KHAMAMA x Purling London Art Chess sets
Butterfly wing marquetry by KHAMAMA

The KHAMAMA team is inspired by the beauty of nature with its myriad variations, colours and patterns. In all cultures, butterflies are the epitome of beauty. Designers and artists around the world ever since try to capture this beauty on precious fabrics, classic artwork and fine jewellery in the shape of butterflies. Despite all attempts, the beauty of butterfly remains unmatched. In its quest to create exquisite artefacts, the KHAMAMA team searches out the most beautiful genuine butterfly wings from around the world from sustainable and ethical sources

KHAMAMA Noctua 1850 Grand Humidor and X Purling London Art Chess ‘Noctua’
KHAMAMA Noctua 1850 Grand Humidor and X Purling London Art Chess ‘Noctua’
KHAMAMA golden butterfly wings
KHAMAMA butterfly marquetry

“KHAMAMA” is the Cherokee word for “butterfly.” For the Cherokee Native Americans, butterflies are the connection between the human world and the world of their gods.

The first time a Cherokee, hundreds of years ago, created this mellifluous word to describe butterflies as the epitome of freedom, elegance and unmatched natural beauty captures our core essence – the positive connection between humanity and nature – KHAMAMA.

We are delighted to be able to offer a bespoke service for our Art Games. If you would like to enquire further about commissioning KHAMAMA to create a unique hand-painted Art Chess, Backgammon or Checkers set specially for you, please get in touch via our Contact Form below.