Milka Karaağaçlı, who has worked in marketing and communication fields of advertisement sector for 13 years, started this journey with a necklace of evil-eye for a friend. For more information on the designer who says every moment is a choice and created Kısmet brand, take a look at our interview.
Stepping into design after working for years in advertisement… How did it begin?
During the time when spirituality was the new trend, I made a gift of a necklace with an evil eye to a friend who lived in London, and it was very well-liked. Her friends began to order its bracelet, earring, necklace from me. In 3 weeks, I made and sent 70 different models with an evil-eye and all were sold. As people liked and wanted to buy my designs, my eagerness for production grew. I found a field where I could express my life view, my beliefs. As I learnt the subtleties of the work, I began to enjoy it more and dived in! And then Kısmet was born.
Why Kısmet as the title?
As for the Kısmet title; we make a choice in each instance of life and in each instance we shape our futures. Actually we create our own futures with our own decisions. Kısmet means luck, fortune, share. It’s about the future. The stones I use in my jewellery reflect all kinds of negative energy, thus I protect myself and make my own choices, decide on my future. I say this brand is my Kısmet, my luck; when I wear Kısmet I really feel good and I believe my luck, my energy soars. I transfer this beautiful energy to each and every product. Kısmet wearers know this well.
What does jewellery mean to you?
Jewellery is what’s always been in my life, it’s my pleasure. When I was 4-5 years old, I’d lose myself with the bijoutery my grandfather produced. I’d fill my wrists up, there would be at least 8-9 bracelets on my arm. So I was the same as now. Many times, I would also produce with my own hands. I continued wearing and enjoying jewellery all my life. I was always interested in fashion, in trends. And my style was very clear and strict. I guess somewhere inside I always knew that I would be a designer someday, because I created, I produced all my life.
What’s your target with Kısmet by Milka?
My target is for“Kısmet by Milka” to be known as a Turkish brand globally… Actually, Kısmet brand is in the global market now. I export to 9 countries including USA, Australia, Dubai, France, England, Switzerland, Japan, Cyprus and Kuwait; I have more than 30 selling points outside Turkey. I think one of the most important ones is that it is being sold by Amazon.com.
Personalizations, innovative combinations attract attention in jewellery, what do you think of this?
I completely reflect my own style in the jewellery I design. I like wearing a lot of jewellery, too. I wear simple clothes but I always wear a lot of jewels that are harmonious with each other and look stylish. All my models are sharp but simple models. I don’t mix too many materials. This allows for all my jewellery to combine with each other. Hence, they all become different but harmonious with each other.
How do these jewels appear, what feeds you? What’s effective in your design process?
I believe if you know the story of its design, you connect more with your jewellery and then carry it with feeling. I create my designs with this point of view. When I go on holidays, new collections appear. During our daily lives, we don’t get much time to listen to ourselves, we always find something to do, somewhere to run to. When I go on a three days long journey, my brain resets itself in the second day. Then I begin to create and draw them on my return. Other than these, a sentence in a book I read, an architectural detail I see in a magazine or a feeling I get while walking get me moving, too.
Color, precious stones, different gold colors… Each of your products have a different story; which one of them is closest to you?
All the stones I use are highest quality and real. I use white, black and cognac colored diamonds. When I want to add color, I use different colors of rubies and natural sapphires. Other than these, I like to use different materials in my collections. I use onyx stones, silk fabrics, even ebony trees. To choose the closest one to me among my collections is very hard; because I designed them with different points of view and different feelings, each one of them reflect a side of me.
Where can we find your products?
They are sold in my own showroom in Bebek, and also in stores like Harvey Nichols, Brandroom and Midnight Express; you can also find them online at http://www.lidyana.com. You can find Kısmet in different stores in Ankara, Balıkesir and İzmir. And you can reach Kısmet from amazon.com if you are abroad.
What will happen next? Is there a new exhibition/product/activity?
We will open a new showroom in Suadiye in October. Aslı Onan, basketball playerÖmer Onan’s wife, will be opening that. Again with the same concept, this time on the street, but in the first floor of a building. In short, whatever I do for the brand, I make sure it reflects quality, distinctness, uniqueness. As for collections, I’m always creating. My“Siyah Sihir (Black Magic)” collection where I surround onyxes with diamonds and pink gold is my newest collection.