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Meet Galina Gegenava of Creative Galina & Co. in Downtown Los Angeles

Today we’d like to introduce you to Galina Gegenava.

Galina, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
It’s all started with fitness journey of overcoming eating disorders and finally putting the end to nonsense dieting and struggle of losing weight. And I did not just lose weight, I got in the shape of my dreams and competed in the bodybuilding figure division. Learning the discipline, learning about my body, learning about the structure I started applying new routines and structure into my creative life. I’m a graphic designer with a very creative eye to fashion and style, around 2010 I was making costume jewelry on Etsy. My audience started to grow organically with my fitness journey during preparation for my first competition in 2012. I realized I started attracting a new type of people with the same struggles I had in the past. From 112 pound to 190, I have gone through all types of diets and know exactly how you feel when you secretly enjoy starving feeling or overeat yourself with no regrets at the social events or reach out to sugar as an emotional eater to make yourself feel better for a moment. I could not believe how many women struggled with the same issue as I had in the past and till this day, I see how many still struggle. I designed and manufactured in DTLA tiny classic dumbbell, requests in silver started to grow. In 2013, I started small production in the heart of Downtown LA in the jewelry district. I have learned the basics of metalsmithing and stepped into the world of business owner. Handmade in USA, sterling silver and Gold – Dumbbell Couture jewelry collection became “Tiffany” of the fitness world.

Fitness love came to me in my early 30’s, I had no understanding of proper eating and had no fitness background of any kind. As 40 years old, I live in the best shape of my life and I truly believe it’s never too late to start something new and trust me it’s more fun in outside of your comfort zone. Tiny Dumbbell charm became part of many women like me around the world and became part of their amazing one of a kind journey. On social media, I got to learn about my jewelry customers and witness their fitness journey. Without a doubt, I can have training partners and BFF and many cities within the US and outside of the borders. I found my creative way of doing what I love and continue growing and living in a full circle of life MIND BODY and SOUL. Dumbbell Couture collection was born with one intention to remind you that absolutely anything is possible.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I truly think there is no such thing as a smooth road in achieving something in life. Rather you losing weight or building an independent creative path, be prepared for life lessons. I had to learn about jewelry production, I have stepped into the world of a business owner, I had to learn the basic structure and create production flow. Meanwhile learning about social media and marketing strategy. No one prepares you in life for life but you to be a business owner. Working for over 14 hour a day, only a few truly understood what I have established, you will learn who is your people when you step outside of the box, trust me it’s more fun there lol You have to have a different type of skin for running a business and be prepared for constant challenges. Having a business is like never-ending life schooling.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
For the past few years, I was responsible for at least 80% of my business operation. Online store maintenance, email list, order processing, shipping, packing, designing printing material and social media content. Product assembly, soldering, and polishing. I do it all. In the world of made in China, Dumbbell Couture is fine handmade jewelry, made upon order for one of a kind journey and claimed by many customers as Tiffany of the fitness world. Handmade high quality, Dumbbell Couture classic look can be worn on a daily bases in any working environment. From nurses to business owners, Dumbbell Couture charm is a perfect conversation starter to share your journey and inspire others with your one of a kind journey. This one of a kind dumbbell became daily motivational jewelry for many women on the journey to achieve their fitness goals.

What were you like growing up?
I grew up watching my seamstress mother, who is a queen of all the creative skills. I start making my own clothing at the age of five, always was involved in some kind of creative classes after school. Instead of playing with dolls, I would make new clothes for them and always customize they look. Choosing a creative way of living is the only way I know how to function from an early age. I can easily unplug from the world and get possessed by creative spirits.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

Photography by Yoshawn Smith, apparel by LA Vogue Boutique.

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