We'd love to know your story! How did you get started? How did you get to where you are today? What are you most proud of?
Our story began years ago while in High School, I was intrigued by gemstones, metals, and casting and so I took a jewelry-making class and loved it. In college, I took a few more classes to learn about newer jewelry-making and metal melting techniques, but the business didn’t launch until a few years later. After doing some traveling through Europe, I fell in love with the different cultures and different styles of jewelry, and so I began making beaded pieces ranging from bracelets, earrings, and chunky necklaces which were in style back in the early 2000.
During all this time, I’ve always had a full-time job in the healthcare industry and making jewelry would always feel therapeutic and my clients were mainly my co-workers. Jewelry styles evolved and our styles have changed throughout the years and Miluk Collections came to life after a few years. Miluk came from our two golden retrievers, Miko and Lukas, at the time we were struggling with infertility a journey of over 10years and so it felt appropriate to name it after our four-legged kids. Miluk (mee-look) may also mean my look in Spanish, so the name fits perfectly representing my Latino heritage.
Our first physical store opened many years later, in UTC La Jolla after all the renovations we finally opened our doors in a beautiful kiosk right in the middle of the renovated mall. We would take turns my mom would cover the mornings and we would cover the evening shifts, I would go with my husband every day after work and would close at 9 pm, every day and on Saturdays and Sundays. After a year of long days and nights, we hired our first employee to help with the weekends and some evenings. Business was great. I’ve always had an entrepreneur mindset and have always loved selling however, we were still battling infertility and many treatments so it was very difficult managing it all. After our last failed IVF and after almost three years at UTC, we closed our doors, we were in need of a break both physically and emotionally.
A few years went by, I took an amazing job opportunity and were pregnant after a 3rd and final IVF attempt. We were blessed with our beautiful, healthy twin girls. However, there was always a desire to come back to Miluk so after two years, I decided to bring Miluk Collections back to life. So here we are, we recently launched our website and are just really putting our entire hearts out to our small business.
Who has been the most inspirational person in my life and at what stage?
I would say both my Mom and my husband as they have been supporting me through this journey and dream for years!
What advice would you give someone wanting to pursue a career similar to yours?
Don’t stop following your passion, your dreams! We are here for such a short time that regret is the worst feeling you can have!
What are the best resources that have helped you along the way?
Podcasts, social media seminars, online advertising, and partnerships with women’s groups
What are your top self care routines? Disconnecting from everything and being with my family. Mental well-being is very important and work-life balance can have a great impact
What is the most challenging part about what you do?
Coming up with new innovative designs that will capture my audience and still keep our essence
Follow your dreams, believe in yourself and just take a leap of faith!
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