Featured Designer: Mooku

FK chats to Fran of Melbourne jewellery label, Mooku who will be debuting at our upcoming Melbourne markets!

Can you tell us about your lovely label and where the name comes from?
The name ‘Mooku’ is a play on the nickname that my siblings and I call my mother, Moeke (pronounced ‘Mooka’ or ‘Mooki’). I thought it was quite fitting to use her nickname after having had my own child.
I started Mooku a little over 18 months ago. It is a range of contemporary jewellery mostly of resin, Tasmanian Oak, bamboo and sterling silver. After working for many years and then having had my first child, I needed a creative outlet, so I decided to delve into the world of jewellery and started up Mooku.

What is your creative background and how did it lead you to where you are today?
My background is in product design. After completing my degree in Industrial Design, I worked overseas for a few years and after coming home worked designing products for Myer, Freedom, Howard Storage World and many others. About seven years ago I started designing and producing resin jewellery. At the time it wasn’t a full time job, but I knew I wanted to turn it into a business… and today we have Mooku!

What inspires you daily?
I spend quite a bit (perhaps too much?) time viewing blogs and browsing the many interior design magazines I have lying around the house. With young children I often  find myself walking to parks and spending time in nature. I am constantly picking up leaves and seed pods and taking photos of beautiful things I see on my walks. I also have a collection of 1970’s home decorating books which I always seem to be drawn towards.

Some of my favourite websites for inspiration are:
The Design Files
Design Sponge
Apartment Therapy
I’ve also just recently discovered Pinterest and I’m going a bit crazy filling it with things that take my fancy!
Check out Mooku Pinterest.

What is your workspace like? and what is your creative process?
Like most ‘creatives’ I have my workspace and home all mixed into one. Currently my husband and I share an office space and I’ve setup a workshop under the house, but most of the time I find myself working at the kitchen table or out under our pergola designing the latest range, exploring the internet or assembling necklaces and earrings. It really helps to have a laptop and wireless internet!
When I’m developing a new range I typically fill pages and pages of my A5 drawing book with sketches and notes. Once I’m happy with the designs I refine the looks by adding colour and slowly building the range and story. Once I’m fairly happy with the pieces I then take to my computer and draw them up in Illustrator to create the final range.

What challenges have you faced starting your own label, and what are some things you love about it?
My biggest challenge lately has been the arrival of another baby! With two young children I have had to find the balance between work and family. It’s a challenge everyday but writing lists and ticking off tasks usually allows me to focus my attention. Loving what I do also makes it easier to give up some of my weekends and evenings to focus on the business. I also have an amazingly supportive husband to pick up the slack, thanks Cam!

What can we expect to see from Mooku at the upcoming Melbourne Finders Keepers?
My latest range is called ‘Urban Trail’. It is a bit of a homage to the many hours I spend wandering along the walking tracks around Melbourne. As always, the range comes in an array of colour in both subtle tones and brights. I’ll also be displaying new native creatures in the form of brooches for the first time! Come by and say hi!



  • Kristina says:

    Beautiful necklaces – I will for sure come by and say HI on the Finders Keepers market!

  • Karen Eby says:

    Hi Fran,
    I loved your items and thought you would be a perfect fit for our show. If you are interested, I would love to chat to you about exhibiting your designs. The MindBodySpirit Festivals have been running for 23 years between Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and now Adelaide, making them Australia s premium health and wellbeing expo. Each MindBodySpirit Festival brings together the very best products and services for physical, mental and spiritual development. These include fitness, organics, natural beauty products, weight loss, complementary medicine, holistic therapies, spirituality, personal growth, eco-friendly products, spas and health retreats, body therapies, alternative healing practises. Our primary target market are females aged 25 54, all with a strong interest in health and wellbeing. By exhibiting at the Festivals you could create an awareness of your products and build a database of qualified leads. Adelaide 29 Sept 1 Oct 2012 (3 day event, running over Adelaide s Labour Day long weekend), Adelaide Showgrounds, inaugural event for 2012 Also, please have a peek at our website http://www.mbsfestival.com.au. I’d love to discuss this further with you, as your business would enjoy strong success at the Festivals. If this is of interest to you, please don t hesitate to contact me on 03 9276 5522 or Kareneby@eea.net.au. Kind Regards, Karen Eby

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