Every day I find myself admiring each and every one of my friends, especially Rachael.
Rachael has been my best friend for what seems like forever. We grew up together, going through the awkward pre-teen era, first loves, new schools and I am so proud to still call her my best friend after 22 years.
If you're wondering why I'm talking about Rachael today, it's because this yoga-loving friend of mine has recently launched her own jewelry collection, Om On.
I collect accessories like it's my job, so when Rach told me about her new passion I could not have been more excited.
Based on a healthy, peaceful and cultured lifestyle, Rachael hand makes each and every necklace, making each piece one of a kind and totally special.
Today, I am so excited to introduce you to my friend and designer, Rachael Kamlet.
Scroll down to check out my interview with Rach and see why you should want to be her BFF, too!
RK: Well, you pretty much covered it all! Yes, I recently graduated Florida State University and was born and raised in Miami Beach, FL. I am now starting my 2 month trip, backpacking around Europe. I was actually able to fit all my clothing into one back pack, which is a true miracle! Besides traveling I love any thing that is adventurous. I am a certified advanced open water scuba diver, avid mountain biker, certified TRX trainer and an all around lover of life. You can stick me on a mountain in Colorado with a backpack or on the beach with a bathing suit and I will be the happiest girl in the world.
My company Om On allows me to show my creative side and of course I incorporate nature into all of my pieces, I use all natural stones and gems. Using earth born materials is very important to me and I feel that it brings out a piece of me in each of my creations.
SIS: Om On is your newly launched jewelry line of hand made, one of a kind Malas. What inspired you to start this?
RK: My mother has always been so encouraging about every little idea I have and project I want to start. Naturally, when I went to her with some pieces I had made she encouraged me to pursue my dream. While attending Florida State University I started making bracelets and selling them at the weekly student market every Wednesday. This was a great way to meet people and I really enjoyed every minute of it. I received tons of positive feedback and decided to continue with this. As I became more involved in yoga and taking my practices more seriously, I began to make mala neckalces, which are used during yoga practices. I love the spiritual background that yoga has, and each piece I make is really inspired by the natural high I receive when I practice yoga and meditate. Of course, with all natural stones and gems I have found that my pieces of jewelry really ground me and keep me feeling at one with nature.
"Whenever I am faced with a challenge or an obstacle I am now able to step back, take a few breaths, an act accordingly."
RK: Life. I feel inspired every time I walk on the beach or bike a nature trail. Like my mother always says, "Only nature can produce such beauty."
I really do believe this. Every natural color that I come across, whether it is in a stone I want to make a necklace out of or a beet that I want to make a juice out of, I am constantly amazed. I also find a lot on inspiration through my practice of yoga. When I complete a two hour practice then meditate afterwards, I find ease with life and the situations that I am faced with. Yoga has allowed me to step back and breathe, which has truly helped and inspired me.
SIS: Your necklaces are inspired by yoga and the lifestyle behind the awesome work out. How has your life changed since you started practicing yoga?
RK: Ever since I have practiced yoga my life has become much simple. I find that I no longer crave superficial things in my life. The people that I choose to surround myself with are all people that I truly care about and would do anything for. I no longer feel the need to fill gaps with people that I really may not have much in common with. Instead, I fill those gaps with inspiration to do well and achieve whatever I set my mind to. Whenever I am faced with a challenge or obstacle I am now able to step back, take a few breaths, an act accordingly. Yoga has helped me to see that the things I used to think were a big deal are really not. I have so much to be grateful for that wasting time worrying about nonsense is really pointless.
SIS: Along with being in great shape and creating such awesome pieces of jewelry, you have an insane sense of style. What are your favorite places to shop, what brands are your favorites?
RK: My favorite yoga leggings are definitely Teeki, I get so many compliments from people about the designs. I make sure to tell them that Teeki products are made out of recycled plastic bottles, which I think is amazing! Besides yoga pants, which I wear every day, I love wearing pieces that are unique and often one of a kind. To be honest, a specific brand is difficult for me to come up with because whenever I travel I come home with amazing clothes that cannot be found in America. If I were to pick some brands and stores here I would say Zara, Gypsy, JBrand (jeans and a tshirt with the right necklace is always a go to for me), and of course I like supporting local boutiques. Supporting local artists and shops has always been extremely important to me.
SIS: I know that yogis tend to go barefoot, but on a night out with your girlfriends, what shoe is your go to?
RK: Yes barefoot would be ideal! My go to shoe would be my Dolce Vita beaded sandals, they are the closest to barefoot that I can get ! If I am going out I may throw on my Dolce Vita wedges that are very natural looking as they are leather and have a cork wedge.
RK: Yes traveling has always been my favorite thing to do. I think it is so important to experience different cultures. My all time favorite place I have traveled is Thailand. I spent a month in Thailand traveling around the north. The first part of my trip I did with a friend of mine and then for the second half my mom and sister flew out and met me which was amazing. I loved Thailand because everywhere you go you can find a hidden sanctuary with golden Buddhas and inspirational words written on the trees.
I will never forget when I went spelunking. We found a spot and crawled into the mountain. After passing through small crawl ways we finally found an entrance to a large room. What did we find? A giant golden Buddha and others around it. This was such a spiritual experience for me as you can imagine. Here we were in the middle of a mountain, and we came across a meditation area with golden carved Buddhas everywhere. Not only was Thailand an amazing spiritual experience for me but the people were so kind and helpful, they call it the land of smiles and I now know why. Being able to stay the night in local villages and playing games with children of the Karen tribe was truly amazing. I cannot wait to go back!
SIS: What is one place you haven’t traveled to yet that you would love to go?
RK: The one place I am dying to go to is the Galápagos Islands. This is a trip that I am saving for. I scuba dive and hear that it is absolutely amazing. Being able to visit a place that is not built on or touched by man is so rare in this day and age. I love nature and would absolutely love to experience those islands.
SIS: Where do you see yourself in five years?
RK: In five years I hope that I have traveled a lot more and that I love life as much as I do now. It's scary to think that in 5 years I will be 27. I remember being 15 and telling my mom that in 5 years I will be 20. So by then I hope to be settled down, doing what I love and starting a family of my own. Whether I will be running a successful business or working as a professional I just hope to wake up loving life and everything around me.
SIS: Any last advice to aspiring yogis and jewelry designers?
RK: Keep on going and om on ! At times when I want to give up and I think that I am crazy for continuing this dream of mine I step back and take a few breaths. Life is hard and sometimes you are going to get what you don't want. My advice is to make the most out of it and be thankful for the times you do get what you want.
Life is too short, live on, rock on, and om on.