Here at Annie Heyward Styling, we love any opportunity to support other women who are following their dreams. So once a month, we are going to interview and feature an inspiring woman that owns a start-up company or small business. This series will be called “In Her Shoes”, and is meant to inspire and encourage all women. It is so important to write about these female entrepreneurs, because it really can empower others to follow their dreams and reach their goals! I feel honored that I get to be a part of it and interview these inspiring women.
Our first featured woman is Rose Mailutha, who is the owner/designer of Moon Rocks to Roses. Annie is a big supporter of Rose’s jewelry line and owns several pieces (with a special one in the works). Read on to learn more and see my interview with Rose!
C: First things first, tell us a little bit about your company.
R: Moon Rocks To Roses got it’s official name and went public in December 2014, and is based in Los Angeles. I have been creating jewelry for seven years and have a few independent contractors that work with me.
C: Where do you gather the inspiration for your designs?
R: My grandfather was a healer and I believe he lives through me as I never really knew him. I met him maybe once or twice. I say this because I have a natural sense of self healing. I believe you can heal yourself by daily practice of healthy eating, positive thinking, moving your body (dance, walk, exercise), homeopathy and the stones from the earth. Thus, my name Moon Rocks To Roses, uses these semi-precious stones that seem to come from the moon and turn you into roses (Roses die and grow stronger each time with new growth and shine brightly, yet they need to be cared for to grow, like our mind, body and spirit). This idea gave birth to the mala’s made from semi-precious stones that have healing properties. Other pieces are inspired by my daughter, love, music, nature, fashion, materials at hand and people.
C: How would you describe your personal style? Is that reflected in your designs?
R: I would describe myself as bohemian elegant. I can move from a beachy relaxed look to a very elegant relaxed evening look. I love Chanel and all those classic pearls, which I have designed to be worn from day to evening. I love the 70’s with the big bold pieces like my cuff, and the hammered ring. I’m inspired by peace and love which is reflected in the dove and heart necklace, the infinity ring and bracelet. The malas are very bohemian and can be layered from day to evening.
C: The holidays are coming up; which pieces do you think would be great gifts?
R: The hammered ring, the infinity ring, the infinity bracelet, the tiny initial necklace, the peace and love necklace, any of my beaded bracelets and a custom made mala would be the ultimate holiday gift to a loved one.
C: Do you tend to follow any fashion trends when designing the jewelry?
R: Yes, I really love Chanel and boho elegant looks. I love to see how designers are accessorizing on the runway. I love the challenge of translating that to everyday wear.
C: What kind of woman do you see wearing your jewelry?
R: My target market is that self-assured, independent woman with her own unique sense of style. A woman who is creative, makes no excuses for who she is and is constantly evolving. One who has a sense of freedom; a bohemian. She keeps up on trends, but makes it her own. I make custom mala’s (Buddhist rosaries) with semi-precious stones, which involve horning in the personality of the person.
C: What inspired you to start your own company?
R: I have always been an entrepreneur since I was a kid. I aspired to be a woman who was in charge of her life. I always wanted some kind of small business where I could be my own boss, and have the freedom to express my creativity under my terms. Now that I’m a mom, I feel a reinforced importance to be my own boss, which gives me the freedom to be there for my daughter fully while still making a living doing something creative that fills me with joy and passion. Being able to create fills a human being with joy, love and passion. I believe it makes a happy human being.
C: What are some of the biggest challenges and rewards of being a woman running a company?
R: This question makes me laugh. I am a single black woman who is a model. I have always found creative ways to survive and support herself, which alone is a challenge. Being a model makes many people not take you seriously. They tend to think, “What do you know, you are just paid to be beautiful?”. I have had a successful career as a fashion model and commercial actress for over 15 years, and I’m still currently modeling and acting. I have always supported myself through many ups and downs. I took that doubt in me from people and turned it into motivation to keep doing and going. Through that, I can motivate other women around me to break the mold; color outside the lines. Do what fills you with joy because this is your life. One of my favorite quotes is, “What if I fall, what if you fly darling?”. I am currently funding my jewelry line, mainly because I want control over creativity which is overall much more important to me than the sales and mass production. In regards to rewards, it has made me joyful, a better person, and a good mom who is growing better everyday. It is so important, especially for moms raising girls, for children to see their moms being creative, strong, independent and happy.
C: What is some advice that you would give a woman following a dream or goal?
R: Start now on that dream, whatever it may be. You could make a story board (with images words) for a starting point, and begin the manifestation of a dream. Do not listen to anyone who tells you it is impossible. Audrey Hepburn has a quote, “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible'”! Never EVER give up and feed that dream everyday with anything positive. Make that dress, bake that cake, paint the picture. Don’t be afraid to fail, because it is through failure that you become stronger and smarter. Believe in yourself and know that anything is possible truly deep in your heart. Everything you need to know to get started is at your finger tips with the internet, classes, books, and magazines.
C: Where can we get your jewelry?
R: You can contact me directly for any sales at email@example.com. I also do wholesale. I showcase on instagram and Facebook, and currently do trunk shows. I am working on expanding to a few local boutiques. I love to do custom pieces, which is the exact reason I am not mass producing. The jewelry is handmade so no two rings or bracelets are alike. I really love the idea of having something that is different and uniquely mine.
You can follow Rose and her beautiful jewelry on instragram (#moonrockstoroses) and Facebook.
Thank you so much to Rose for being a part of the ‘In Her Shoes’ series! I hope her story inspires others to be the boss of their own life, and fill it with joy and passion.