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Meet Nihan Gur of Moruk Istanbul in Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Nihan Gur.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Nihan. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was born in a city called Adana in Turkey. “The Sicily of Turkey” as people put it. I moved to the States when I was around 8-9yrs old. I think I always knew I wanted to be an actress. I would be engulfed in reading and watching movies growing up. The feeling of being transported into the different lives I would see on the screen was always so magical for me. I grew up in Wilmington, NC and started theatre there. Middle School is always tough for any kid but being olive skinned, a name people couldn’t pronounce had its own challenges. But you adopt, its human nature. By the time I was in high school I was in every theatre production that the school offered and kept busy playing sports. I wasn’t sure what I would do for college and New York seemed like a good idea. I got accepted to a great college but after completing my first year I knew I wanted to go to an all film school. I got into one of the well-known conservatories full time and two jobs to keep me going. After school, Los Angeles was a no brainer. I kept going to studios for couple of years until booking something decent. In the mist of all this there was definitely a lot of up and downs and broke moments. That’s an artist’s life. So, you’re always looking for that side job that doesn’t feel like a side job. I’ve been fortunate enough to bartend for couple of years and it’s what keeps me afloat in this expensive city while I pursue my passion. However, for a creative it’s not enough. We are always looking for ways to change things up, to express ourselves. I think that’s what makes people in this industry super interesting and strong. It’s not easy what we are doing and the things we sacrifice.

After a while you really have to look at yourself and see what’s different and unique and how you can use that to your advantage. Two years ago I went back to Turkey after many years. Connecting with your own culture and language is such an experience I can never put into words. My boyfriend and I took a road trip from Istanbul to Kas that year and I was mind blown. It was crossing the Country from North to South by the Eagean Sea. It’s such a beautiful place with so much history. After this trip I came up with the name Moruk. My boyfriend and his friends would call that to each other. Its sort like how you would say “Bud, Buddy, Pops, etc.” but the definition actually means ‘Old Person.’ I just liked how young kids use it but the definition is actually the opposite. I always had an eye for jewelry. I always said if could change careers it would be in fashion, and more specifically a Jewelry Buyer. So of course, once I was traveling in Turkey, I was gawking at every jewelry stand or store we would pass. Turkey has the most authentic, unique pieces in the world. Especially from a buyer’s point of view. So, with the help of my boyfriend who is my partner in Moruk Istanbul we decided to really go on a search for some original sterling silver rings.

He’s really great at the financial part of things and we both trust each other on having the creative eye. Moruk Istanbul was launched in the middle of Quarantine, however. But It’s going smoothly and a great learning experience for us both when it comes to having a brand outside of yourself. I truly think it’s unique. All the rings we have individually picked are Sterling Silver from the lands of Turkey. Like every business, you just need time and marketing and right now that’s all we have. And who knows, I do want to make some handmade jackets later on to add to our brand. All in gods will.

Has it been a smooth road?
It’s super knew honestly. We love that we can take our time with it during this quarantine and not push. Definitely learning some different marketing ways and being careful financially. I’m sure there will be bigger bumps on the road but nothing we can’t learn and move forward from. I believe, especially all the creatives out there, you try one thing. You fail. You try again. Whether that try again means change your direction or step back and observe before proceeding or go in a completely different direction. It’s all learning and growing. So, we’ll see where this takes us.

Please tell us about your business.
Moruk Istanbul specializes in rings at the moment. More specifically for men. However, I do own one or two pieces from our collection and I’m obsessed with them. The rings are all from Turkey. Sterling Silver, each carries its own uniqueness. We have handpicked each one with limited quantity. Some will only be released for that month. Some we may bring back down the road. I’m proud that our product is where I’m from. It reflects who we are as a person and company. And to be able to merge two worlds together as I try to do with my acting really means a lot to me. Its new and exciting.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love Los Angeles. This is my home and has been for several years now. I’m a sun child. And the city has evolved from when I first moved here. It’s become more diverse while staying authentic. I love going to the flea markets, to thrift stores, music venues, to doing random activities around town. Not to mention food trucks that pop up along the ways. Every part of Los Angeles is different to its uniqueness. I would love to see more homeless shelters in LA. I think that’s an area we can improve on. And of course, being in the industry more Female Filmmakers who are recognized for their work.

Contact Info:

  • Instagram: MORUKISTANBUL

Image Credit:

Pictures by Oz Seyrek

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