In January, Kismet by Milka opened its first flagship store in the posh area of Bebek, Istanbul. Kismet, which means fortune and luck in Turkish, is known for its large variety of 14 karat rose gold and diamond stacking rings, ear cuffs, and trendy yet personal pieces. Designed by Milka Karaagalci, the brand launched several years ago and quickly became on of the country’s most coveted brands. We caught up with Milka to get a little insight into what inspired the store, and how it influences her designs.
COUTURE: Why did you decide to open a store in this particular area?
Milka Karaagalci: Bebek is one of the most beautiful neighborhoods in Istanbul. It is hip, authentic, modern and cool with a dash of historical and nostalgic effect at the same time. Our first showroom was originally in Bebek so we can say that this is actually the location where Kısmet by Milka was born. It was a big challenge to choose the right location for the flagship store, but now I feel like this was the perfect decision.
COUTURE: What is your favorite thing about having a retail store of your own?
MK: I think, having a store of your own, touching other people with your inspirations and taking inspirations from them, is what keeps your designs alive. It pushes me to dream and create more, while giving me the liberty of telling the stories about the brand and behind the collections to my clients in person. I can also provide a bigger selection of my designs which complete the stories, and clients love that.
COUTURE: How many people do you have working in the store and how often are you personally in the store?
MK: We have 2 people working at the store, but I personally go there a lot. While working, we work as a team. I like being in the store and seeing people’s reactions to the store and the collections. Meeting new people and hearing their stories continues to inspire me.
COUTURE: Has having your own retail store influenced any of your designs?
MK: Actually, in honor of the flagship store opening, we created the third installment of our brands signature “Star” collection, titled The Sheriff Star.
The new collection represents luck, power, and protection, fitting in perfectly with its predecessor collections, The North Star and Wonder Woman Star. A majority of the store was custom designed to match the Kismet aesthetic, even the door handles are North Star style.