We had the pleasure of talking to the Founder and Designer of Pink Pewter, Mireya Villarreal, after her return from her international travels this week. Mireya was excited to take the time to step outside in the beautiful weather to talk to us about her personal style, childhood dreams, and the soon to be released Pink Pewter Jewelry Line! Check out her interview below.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I’m from Chicago, born and raised.
Q: As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: I wanted to be a hairdresser, and I did become a hairdresser. But I went to school for business.
Q: What was your first job?
A: My mom, for summer, made me go work at a restaurant. And I was a salad girl. So I used to make salads… [Laughs] I only worked there for three weeks, but that was my first job…It’s kind of funny.
Q: Where is your favorite place you’ve traveled and why?
A: Let me think about it, because I’ve been to a lot of pretty places…I’m going to say Venice. It’s a romantic city. It’s beautiful. It’s something that everyone should experience–I mean, the roads are water. The architecture is fantastic, and the food is phenomenal. I just love Venice, Italy.
Q: Pink Pewter has become super successful internationally, and you’ve gotten to meet and connect with many people. Who is your favorite celebrity?
A: My favorite celebrity, I would say, is Carrie Underwood. I haven’t met her, but I wish I had. She is a very inspirational person that, honestly, I admire. I don’t know if you guys realized yesterday I was tagged in a post with her in Haiti. I thought that the picture she was in was a vacation picture with a little girl. But it turns out, as of this morning I found out that the little girl in that picture was in the hospital. The little girl has, I can’t remember what it was, but she has no muscles in her body. The woman next to Carrie, her name is Sarah and she’s a missionary. She donates her time out there, obviously. But I got so inspired by Sarah emailing me last night that I am going to send the whole hospital Pink Pewter. I’m so moved by everything that she has done. Everyone there has some sort of medical issue and by Carrie doing that…I was just so…I mean it was a fan tagging me in a post thinking Carrie’s hair was so beautiful. But I was more moved by the missionary and that little girl… I wish I could go there to give it to them in person.
Q: Out of all your professional accomplishments, what moment of success do you feel has impacted you the most?
A: Honestly, I’m just having a really good time. I mean, the success is just making people smile. I’m enjoying my job, and I’m just so moved by everybody loving our product that it just makes me work harder. The money is the extra. I don’t really care about it. I’m just so happy that everyone is so intrigued with our product. That’s my success, I think.
Q: Describe the first piece you ever designed.
A: Oh my goodness. I don’t know if you guys knew, but I started making hair accessories on my kitchen table for my little girl. And by making so many of them, people started seeing them. It was a flower creation. I actually started with a children’s line in the beginning, and I am going back to it. A lot of my old stores I sold to originally are asking me to start another children’s line. They are pushing me to do it, so I’m going back and doing that for them. But it was a stretch band flower creation.
Q: Where do you draw your inspiration?
A: I travel all over the world, and I get inspired by architecture. And textiles. Have you ever been to an old home? The tiles on the floor have so much art in them or even old carpets in museums. You just grab those kinds of designs, and you make something happen. And I go and source different kinds of beads. I was actually just in Asia, and I found the most amazing gems-which you will see in our future line-but they are real stones, and I am going to actually expand our line into jewelry. Our jewelry is going to be really hot. And they will be real stones, so I’m excited about that…but, yeah–I get inspired by traveling. And what I see. What nature gives me. That’s how I get inspired.
Mireya on the New Pink Pewter Jewelry Line: “It’s coming soon and they are in the process of making it right now. They are going to be bold pieces. Our line is not simple. It’s more…glitzy with diamonds and sparkle. I’m not the conservative kind of designer, so they are definitely bold pieces. You’re really going to like it, I promise.”
Q: What are your favorite mediums to work with when designing a piece?
A: It depends on what I go and source. I get involved a lot with my customers, and I’m kind of excited because as of the last feedback of emails, they were like, “Mireya, I need you to start sourcing and getting me rose gold and AV crystals.” So our line that is coming has a lot of rose gold…so yeah, I really enjoyed working with rose gold and AV crystals.
Q: How do you hope to see Pink Pewter grow in the next 5 years?
A: My job is to grow my stores. And without growing my stores, I don’t think I’ll ever be anywhere. So in the next 5 years, I’m going to be expanding more into jewelry.
Mireya on being involved with her Pink Pewter line: “I don’t believe in not being hands on. At all! I’m not one of those people who likes to buy things that are mass-produced. I like to design every single piece that I own. It’s kind of funny now, as you grow as a brand, you start getting knocked off. I don’t like that feeling, but that’s the world of competition, correct?
Q: How would you define your personal style?
A: I am always in black. I’m kind of Boho Chic.
Q: Do you break any “Fashion Faux Pas?”
A: Whatever I feel like wearing I wear. That’s how I am.
Q: Who are some of your favorite designers/brands?
A: I wear Armani. I like that. I wear BCBG. And I’ll be really honest. I like to shop at places like Forever 21 and H&M. If I like it, I buy it.
Q: Name your must-have staple for your personal wardrobe.
A: Obviously my Pink Pewter! [laughs]
Q: Do you prefer Fall or Spring fashion? Why?
A: I like the Fall. I like to dress in dark colors, and you can accessorize more in the fall.
Mireya on advise to other designers: “Put your heart into your product and what you believe. Try to make people happy, and you will always be successful.”
Check out our other Pink Pewter blogs below: