I'm the co-founder and designer of Secret Language.
Secret Language is a family business. I co-founded it by bringing the idea to my mother, father and brother to do something together. My family has been in the wholesale textile fabric business for generations in Turkey, however, with Secret Language, I wanted to do something different than wholesale fabric business and create something unique and special that will touch the hearts of women around the world.
Secret Language's lace and embroidery accessory collection is handmade completely by female artisans in Turkey using a three-dimensional lace art form. This art form called oya was originated in BC 800 in Anatolia. As it evolved and became a household handicraft for women of the region, this art later became a secret language between women and was passed down from mothers to daughters to express their emotions.
The meanings of what they created with this lace art form were hidden behind the shapes and colors. A new bride who has a troubled marriage chose ‘red hot pepper’ shape as if to say ‘my marriage was unhappy from the beginning'. Roses were worn when the husband was at war. Tiny wildflowers were worn by elder women as a symbol of returning to the earth. When a mother-in-law receives a meadow and grass motif trimmed scarf from her soon to be daughter-in-law, it is a sign of a warm relationship.
What I did with Secret Language collection was to take this ancient art form and bring a new perspective to it by getting inspiration from the women, nature, and colors of Southern California.
I truly believe in superior craftsmanship through sustainable practices, and the unique aesthetic and unconventional creativity of women. That is also why we selected female-led textile businesses to create our embroidered dresses when we started our clothing line this year. I think this is the least we could do on our end to support female artisans and business owners.
It's definitely Pedrero Necklace. It has very detailed lacework on it and it takes a full day to create just one piece by hand. It's a long beaded necklace with stones and blue/brown lacework that symbolizes feminine strength and beauty.
I design the styles here in Los Angeles. They are made in Turkey.
The fashion industry has major sustainability problems at its core. Water consumption and carbon footprint are enormous. But it's a new world to many of us, so we're learning something new every day to see how we can practice sustainability at its core. That is also why we use 100% cotton fiber in our accessories and clothing. Cotton is sustainable, renewable, and biodegradable, making it an excellent choice for us as an environmentally-friendly fiber.
Whereisyourfavoriteplacetobeandwhy? Amalfi Coast, Italy. I find it stunningly beautiful and mesmerizing. The mountains, shores, colorful architecture, narrow alleys, and steep stairs - they were all breathtaking!