Dil at work creating her exquisite pieces

WHEN HOBBY BECOMES BUSINESS by Dil Ismail

by Blessed Ummi

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Put your family first because they are of utmost importance and they are the ones who will be there for you, be it in good or bad times. – Sis Dil Ismail

Turning your passion into business is a dream come true, but it is not without hard work. Meet Sis Fadilah Ismail, better known as Sis Dil Ismail, owner of and artisan at Crafting Luxury, an impressive homegrown jewellery brand. Join us as we chat with Sis Dil to find out how she juggled motherhood while building her skills and her jewellery-making business.

Tell us more about yourself! What are you currently busy with?

I am a fashion jewellery artisan. Currently I manage my online shop selling ready-made accessories as well as rendering my service to a few private clients as their personal fashion jewellery designer.

Recently, I completed my first fashion jewellery design module from the Jewellery Design and Management International School. Coping with motherhood while pursuing creative and academic interest was indeed a challenge, as I had to sacrifice my weekends to attend classes. Like any mum, I felt sad (and a little guilty) each time I left home for classes because weekends are supposed to be spent with my family but I had to attend classes instead. I am fortunate that my family understood the sacrifices that I had to make and gave me their support to pursue what I wanted.

I am still learning as much as I can about the jewellery industry.

Blue-Pearl-Necklace-With-Turquoise-and-Jasper-Beads-750x800

One of the beautiful pieces handcrafted by Dil

We are so in love with your jewellery pieces! How did it all start with Crafting Luxury? Do you make these pieces yourself?

Crafting Luxury started way back in 2011, taking on simple sewing and craft projects as well as teaching the skill to others who are interested. It was late last year (in 2014) that we decided to streamline our services and focus more on customized fashion jewellery and accessories.

My fashion jewellery pieces are carefully handcrafted, using only good quality materials and findings. I incorporate what I love into my designs such as adding Swarovski elements, coupled with the techniques that I have learnt from the jewellery school.

Is there a philosophy/concept behind each piece? Where do you get inspiration for your pieces from?

I’ve always been a lover of elegant, vintage themes. It shows in most of my creations, which feature a lot of classic elements like pearls. I get my inspiration for my crafts and jewellery from lovely wedding themes, magazines as well as Pinterest.

Dil's love for vintage and elegant themes shows in her creations.

Dil’s love for vintage and elegant themes shows in her creations.

How did you first started this passion?

I’ve always been a hands-on person who loves creating pretty things from fabric, lace, ribbons and pretty much anything I can get my hands on!

Crafting has always been one of my hobbies. I attended a Fashion Jewellery Design course from Jewellery Design and Management International School (JDMIS) where I learnt how to design as well as the proper techniques of jewellery making.

Why did you choose to turn it into a business?

I have chosen to be in this business because jewellery has always been associated with happy occasions. Whether worn personally or given away as gifts, jewellery always brings a smile on the recipients’ face and personally, that gives me a sense of satisfaction.  A business that strives to make others happy is always a good business 😉

Hard at work!

Hard at work!

It sounds interesting being a personal fashion jewellery designer! Could you tell us more on how you serve your clients?

For these private clients, I design fully-customised jewellery projects for them. I would speak to them and find out as much as I can about their style and colour preferences, their budget as well as the occasion that  the jewellery pieces are meant for. From there, I would come up with a few designs for them and proceed with the materials purchase once they have approved and selected their preferred design.

You are mum to… Tell us about your family :)

I am a mother of two boys; one a teenager aged 14 years old and a tweenager aged 12 years old.  The biggest “baby” of the home would, of course, be my wonderful husband whom I have been married to for almost 15 years. 😉

Dil Ismail Family

Dil and her beautiful family <3

How do you juggle between mummy duties and the business? What would be the best advice you would give to mumpreneur wannabes?

Like any other mumpreneurs, having to handle home and business is challenging indeed.  Because of this path we have chosen, time management is very important.

I usually work my schedule around my children’s timing, getting whatever that can be done while they are in school.  It was quite a challenge when they were much younger as I did not have a helper who could help me out with the tasks at home.

Alhamdulillah, now that both my children are older, they tend to spend longer hours in school. With that, I have more time to focus on my business and grow with it In Shaa Allah.

I have always regarded myself as a wife and mother first and as an entrepreneur, second. As much as I love the business that I am in and would want to see it soar to greater levels, I put my family, first and foremost, above other matters and that is what I would advise other budding mumpreneurs as well.

Put your family first because they are of utmost importance and they are the ones who will be there for you, be it in good or bad times.

Dil Ismail 6

What was the one thing that kept you going in trying times? How is your support system like?

There is a verse in the Qur’an that I hold on to whenever I experience trying times. It is from Surah Al Inshirah which reads:

“So, verily, with every hardship, there is ease.”  (94:5)

This verse strengthens my conviction that any difficulty that I might encounter is just temporary and it too, shall pass.

Alhamdulillah. For me, my family, especially my husband has been my pillar of strength and I am grateful for that. Some words of comfort from a few close friends would also keep me going in trying times.

What does success mean to you as a mother and a business owner?

As a mother, success is establishing a close knit family where my children will grow up to be happy, strong-willed individuals with good akhlaq and who can contribute positively to the society.

Being in an industry mostly associated with happy occasions, I would consider myself a success each time I am able to put a smile on my clients’ faces when they receive my handcrafted creations.

Who is the one person who inspires you to keep going in hard times? What have you learnt from this person?

One such person is Amilia Gani, the Principal Designer for Facelift Designs & Interiors.  She is an inspiration because she has shown me that it is possible to run a business as well as manage a family at the same time.  From her, I have learnt to be professional when it comes to communicating with clients, work presentation as well as taking rejection and criticisms calmly.  These are skills that can only be attained through years of experience and a great deal of perseverance.


We are extremely grateful to have chatted with Sis Dil! Turning years of hard work and passion into a viable business is definitely inspiring and is a reminder that hard work and perseverance triumph, coupled with the right intention and an action plan. What we were most inspired about is how Sis Dil prioritised her family because she knew her family who would be with her through her good and bad days. It is definitely a good reminder for us that despite what we seek, our primary roles as mothers should be fulfilled with much responsibility first and foremost. With patience, inshaAllah, we will achieve what we have made du’a for.

To honour Sis Dil, we have named our Dil Top (nursing-friendly) after her! Check out this beautiful and versatile top made for office and romantic escapades with hubby 😉

Dil Top Collection

To find out more about Sis Dil, click on the following links:

Crafting Luxury Instagram Page

Crafting Luxury Facebook Page

© Blessed Ummi 2015

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