As I reflect on the last ten years since I conceptualized and launched Mala and Mantra in February 2014, gratitude does not even begin to fully encapsulate how I feel. Joy is my other feeling—knowing that what started as an idea to create a jewelry and accessories collection associated with mindfulness and wellness has grown into a full-fledged brand that provides sustainable income to talented women artisans across the globe.
When I first came up with Mala and Mantra, I wanted to find a way to sustain and support women artisans in the Philippines and to give back and pay homage to my parents’ homeland. The idea has since transformed into a socially responsible global business, spreading the messages of mindfulness and wellness to thousands of people worldwide with our products and programming.
It’s hard to believe a decade has gone by since we first launched our line of mindful and meaningful mala bead jewelry designed with intention to nurture the soul. Every mala we create is handcrafted by amazing artisans and comes with a thoughtfully written mantra to provide a message of mindfulness and wellness to the recipient. Each of the pieces have in their own way, also promoted significant personal transformations for many of you. I am constantly awestruck and amazed by how our brand has touched so many lives, from our artisans to our customers.
Since my youth, I have always been an advocate for artisans and their craft. With a personal passion for art and design, I was blessed and fortunate to attend a college preparatory school which emphasized the fine and performing arts, and which instilled within me a great appreciation for aesthetics.
Gemstones and beads have also always been a great passion of mine. I used to collect stones and beads and taught myself to make jewelry. I had no idea this interest would come full circle later in life when my parents moved to Arizona. It was my father, who was also an avid gemstone collector, who took me to the Tucson Gem Show for the first time. Decades later, after a career in luxury retail and apparel manufacturing, my journey took me back to gems and jewelry. While traveling to the Philippines with my parents in 2009 to see their ancestral homeland through their eyes, I stumbled upon a fair trade cooperative which made jewelry. I told myself that one day, I would like to help these women.
Fast forward to 2024, we have sustained the same women’s fair trade cooperative of artisans in the Philippines for over 10 years, sold our mindful living products to over 300 luxury resorts and spas across the globe, launched our M-powered Living Experience and Mindful Mala Making Experience programming, and have touched the lives of thousands of customers across the globe through our products. Our goal was to change the world one mala bead at a time. A decade later, we are happy and proud to announce that we have sold over 4 million beads.
Thank you to all of you who have been part of our journey and supported Mala and Mantra since our launch. We are deeply grateful and humbled for your interest in our company and enthusiasm for our brand, and even more honored by your support of our mission to create fair, sustainable fashion.
We are fortunate to have so many customers like you across the globe who purchase, wear, and give our products to others. Our hope is for each of you to receive the benefits of the semi-precious natural gemstones we use through their holistic properties and energies. We hope our mantras assist you on your journey to discover your authentic self.
Looking ahead to our second decade, we are working on expanding the breadth and variety of our products and collections to include higher-end materials like precious gemstones and metals. We have already started working with artisans here in the US as well as India. Our commitment to ethical, sustainable production and high quality craftsmanship continues to define our products and partnerships moving forward. This year, we’re turning our focus towards making the best of the artisans’ strengths, their specialized techniques, and the natural resources of specific countries and regions. We are also excited to share our new M+M Luxe Label, featuring elevated jewelry and accessories, along with my handpicked consciously-curated finds on our website.
We envisioned creating a socially responsible company which would serve humanity and deliver value to others. While a decade may seem like a long time, we feel we have barely scratched the surface. We look forward to deepening our impact and engagement with artisan communities around the world, helping to empower individuals so they can reach and realize their full potential.
Finally, one of my biggest goals for our company in the coming decade is to create a mindful community of like-minded individuals who are on a journey to discover and live their truth. I hope you will join me and Team M+M as we invite you to join our community.
With heartfelt gratitude,
Judith Perez Compton
Founder + Creator, Mala and Mantra