My latest accessory obsession has been my “619” necklace from MALA by Patty Rodriguez. Ever since I got it for Christmas it has been my go to accessory, I literally wear it everyday and I’m constantly getting compliments on it! If you didn’t catch on right away, the “619” represents one of the area codes in San Diego where I am from. The jewelry line carries a variety of handmade gold and silver necklaces featuring area codes, cities, and fun words like tacos and pupusas. I had the great opportunity to interview Patty and get the inside scoop on her future plans for the jewelry line.
1. What was your inspiration in creating a jewelry line?
It all started early last year. I have always been very proud of who I am and where I come from; you know my city. I wanted a necklace that said “Lynwood” ….I was never going to find that so I decided I needed to make it myself!
2. Why did you pick the name MALA?
MALA by Patty Rodriguez, I wanted a word in Spanish to represent who I am and to me mala means more than the actual definition, which translates to “bad” To me MALA represents a strong woman, a go getter…an ambitious woman and A woman that many fear, but in a good way.
3. You have necklaces and rings now…What about earrings and bracelets?
I have so many ideas; I don’t even know where to begin!
4. How do you feel about using other metals for your designs like rose gold and gunmetal?
Actually I am working on that!
5. What celebrities/artists do you envision your jewelry on?
Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Fergie are strong women that have worn some of my stuff. But the ultimate artist is Gwen Stefani and Jennifer Lopez of course! All these women are fearless, tough, yet feminine and beautiful – which is exactly what MALA by Patty Rodriguez stands for.
6. What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome that you didn’t see when starting your company?
This happened recently. I emailed a reputable online store my line sheets. They kindly declined, I totally understood and I thought that was the end of it. but a few days later one of my customers happened to be at a party with one of the buyers from that online store. She asked my customer about the necklace he was wearing, she complimented him and asked him where he had gotten it. He told her and immediately she took her words back and according to my customer, she said “Oh yeah, that girl Patty has been emailing us about her line…but her stuff is just ghetto and ratchet” You know, not everyone is going to like what I do….but I know this isn’t ghetto or ratchet…this is an extension of my culture. Some people still have a hard time with that.
7. What advice do you have for young women who aspire following a dream like yours?
Work hard. I know everyone says it. Work hard and have faith…believe, have hope and be kind. Be kind, which is the key.
8. Do you see yourself sticking with jewelry or expanding to different accessories later on in the future?
That is a very hard question. I know God has a path for me and I cannot wait to see what he holds for me.
My MALA necklace represents me, and the beautiful city of sunny San Diego. I’m so proud of where I come from and it’s exciting when someone asks me about my necklace. I can’t wait to get my hands on another MALA by Patty Rodriguez piece! Check out all the cool designs offered at http://shop.malabypattyrodriguez.com and show off how MALA you are.