A MOTHER has revealed how she makes jewellery using breastmilk, babies’ hair, pet ashes and even placenta for customers looking to wear their treasured moments as accessories.
Vickie Krevatin, 47, from Beggarwood in Hampshire, created her unique brand ‘Mom’s Own Milk’ in 2013 after years working in the financial corporate world.
The mother-of-one’s bespoke jewellery and keepsakes cost between £95 – £150 and are individually made for customers around the world.
Her company uses a breastmilk preservation process and a secret formula to create the jewellery.
The brand also embeds ashes and locks of hair into glass jewellery using a heated fusing process and lampworking.
Vickie, who is mum to Jessy, nine, decided to launch the business creating DNA keepsakes after her personal experience with breastfeeding and desire to symbolise it everyday.
She admits her unique jewellery often earns her a string of differing comments – some people think the items are visually striking, some find it ‘disgusting’ while it sparks interest for others.
Vickie spent 20 years working in the financial corporate world before deciding to have children as she approached her forties.
The former specialist in anti-terror financing, money laundering control and sanctions compliance fell pregnant after her first attempt at IVF and despite a difficult pregnancy, her son Jessy was born via C-section in 2011.
The single mother planned to breastfeed Jessy, now nine, for six months before returning to her business career and a year later try for a second child.
However, Jessy ended up being high-needs.
He was diagnosed with severe ADHD and medicated from the age of three. His diagnosis is complex and he is awaiting further autism assessments.
She said: "At the peak of my career and approaching my 40s, I decided it was time to have a few kids.
"Conception was hard and I eventually fell pregnant by IVF treatment at the same time as I was scheduled for back surgery for three herniated disks in my lumbar spine.
"Despite a difficult pregnancy, my son was delivered by C-section. My plan was to breastfeed for six months, return to work and a year later try for a second child.
"Little did I know – Jessy ended up being a very difficult child."
Vickie realised she wanted to spend every moment with her son and could not return to the corporate environment in London.
As Jessy got older, she started looking for ways to keep herself busy while still enjoying time with him – before founding unique brand Mom’s Own Milk in 2013.
She said: "I believe each mother has the choice on how to feed their newborns, toddlers and children.
"Being so close to Jessy from birth, seeing every part of his development and watching him flourish was a life altering experience for me.
"Our mother and son bond grew stronger with each moment spent together and breastfeeding ended up being the catalyst for our relationship and for the conception of Mom’s Own Milk."
Vickie tried to buy breastmilk jewellery but it was relatively new and wait times were between 6 – 24 months. Vickie was impatient and wanted to make her own jewellery.
Seven years later, Vickie’s brand has become the leading UK and worldwide provider of custom made biodegradable eco- friendly glass breast milk jewellery and keepsakes.
She said: "What we do is very Marmite with our customers. We offer a tangible representation of a feeling, frozen in time.
"Our breastmilk jewellery represents all the trials and tribulations in the breastfeeding/ expressing journey.
"I have a charm bracelet with beads containing sand from my favourite holiday places. My own breastmilk is made into a bead and ashes and hair from my beloved dog and cat.
"Wherever I go, people comment on it and remark on how visually striking and unusual it is.
"Once I share what it contains, their expression is either wonder, disgust and inevitably they are shocked it is so pretty."
The brand also offers cremation jewellery using the ashes of a beloved friend, family member or pet as well as bespoke keepsakes containing hair, placenta, umbilical cords, teeth, wedding flowers or bridal lace, sand from a gravesite or favourite place.
Now hundreds of customers place their orders online and complete an inclusion collection kit – which has medical grade vials and instructions.
Nearly all Vickie’s clients are one offs, and prices range from £95 – £150 for items like rings, charm beads and pendants.
Vickie spoke of her own experience with the personal jewellery, adding: "My bracelet is very nostalgic for me.
"It reminds me of simpler times with my son – I thought his formative years were hard but as he grew older he became a more demanding child due to his severe ADHD.
"I also really love animals and my pets were my children before Jessy came along.
"They offered so much comfort and unconditional love and that is what I remember when I feel their ashes against my wrist."
DNA keepsakes and jewellery encompasses anything made using breastmilk, cremains, hair, placenta, umbilical cords, teeth or anything that comes from a person or animal.
She said: "In one instance, we made a keepsake charm for a customer with her breastmilk and part of her child’s aorta that was removed after birth.
"The charm was to celebrate her daughter’s third birthday – she loved it.
"With my brand, I wanted to symbolise time, love, criticism, tears, joy and everything else associated with breastfeeding.
"It is a very close, special and mostly private relationship with my son that I carry with me every day."
Vickie said other processes to create breastmilk jewellery online are flawed as they can cause the preserved breast milk to turn rancid over a few months.
Mom’s Own Milk offers jewellery and keepsakes which can be personalised with different aspects, colours and three dimensional shapes.
The company also successfully imbeds breast milk into glass – which is not affected by environmental changes like UV light, humidity, and temperature.
Vickie said: "The process is simple -a customer places an order through our website and the next day we send out an inclusion collection kit by regular mail.
"The kit contains medical grade vials for customers to add their breast milk. The vials are sealed inside a medical grade safety bag that could absorb the milk should they leak.
"At the start of each week, we open up each bag and send a confirmation email to each customer advising them that their inclusions have been received.
"We then make the items which can involve silversmithing and engraving, glass fusing or lamp worked glass which is done in our glass studio or resin items are made."
Vickie said each order is dealt with individually and vigorous checks throughout the process ensure that there is no mix up of customer inclusions.
The business founder said they rarely have repeat customers and 99% of orders are one-off purchases.
Vickie said she has had people doubt her process and company – but has explained it is similar to when you have your bloods taken for tests.
She said: "There is no way you can be 100% assured that the blood being tested is yours.
"Confidence in the process is attained by having a professional experience.
"We do our best to offer that same level of professionalism."
Vickie’s Facebook page is filled with reviews from happy customers.
One wrote: "Oh my……. this is gorgeous!!! Perfectly timed for the minx starting school."
Another shared: "Dispatched yesterday and in my hands by 11.30 the following day!!!! Anyone who is considering it get one!!”
Meanwhile a third added: "Yey my gift has arrived! It is wonderful. Thank you very much for taking the time to make my little keepsake of my very special breastfeeding journey."
Meanwhile this mum says strangers shame her for breatfeeding in public, but she just tells them to f*** off.
And this mum revealed strangers called her gross for breastfeeding her six-year-old son.
We previously told you about breastfeeding in public – what is the law and what rights do mothers have?
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