Pixel Tracker

Wednesday, December 12 , 2018, 8:52 am | Fair 48º


Mendi Jewelry Showcases International Style at New Store in Paseo Nuevo

Owner Eyyup Mendi, who opened his first store in Solvang, sells eclectic pieces handmade by a relative in Istanbul

Eyyup Mendi had planned to study in Santa Barbara and then go back home to Istanbul. Thirteen years later, Mendi acknowledges that things don’t always go according to plan.

“It’s not like I planned it, but I am very happy here and business is good,” Mendi said.

After studying business administration at SBCC, Mendi opened his second Mendi Jewelry store in Paseo Nuevo about a month ago.

Mendi grew up working in his family’s antique store in Istanbul, where he established a unique sense of style that he said he passes on to customers. Before opening his first store in Solvang, Mendi started a transportation business and eventually sold wholesale jewelry.

His cousin is a master jeweler who manufactures many of the handmade pieces in Istanbul, allowing him to keep his prices reasonable, according to Mendi.

“It’s a product that sells itself because it’s so beautiful and unique,” store manager Steve Melkonian said. “There’s a class of customer who knows what they are looking for, and when they find it they are happy.”

While Melkonian was opening the store Wednesday, a woman was knocking on the glass. She traveled with her friend from Los Angeles just to visit the store.

“You don’t even find this in Los Angeles, and those who find it come back,” he said.

The fall collection includes 24K gold-plated necklaces, earrings and bracelets featuring gemstones accented with intricate beading and vibrant silk ties. Handcrafted silver pendants, rings, earrings and bracelets are finished with bronze detailing and adorned with emeralds, rubies, amethysts, turquoise and crystal.

“I’m lucky to have a cousin who is a great jeweler in Turkey and people who like the product,” Mendi said. “Our jewelry is unique and the prices are reasonable. We are different than other jewelers. Our jewelry is not very simple.”

Most of the pieces have a vintage Turkish style and some replicate Ottoman design, he said.

“Some designs are classical and some are unique to different cultures in Turkey,” Melkonian said. “It’s different than what people see on an everyday basis.”

Other than a dedicated work ethic, honesty has been the key to their success, Mendi said.

“Being honest is very important as well as the service,” he said. “If we can fix something and it’s not going to cost too much, we don’t even charge.”

Mendi plans to hire two more salespeople for his new store as well as expand throughout California.

“Everyone loved our jewelry so I decided to try to do business in Santa Barbara,” he said.

Noozhawk business writer Alex Kacik can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >

Meet Your Realtor Sponsored by Village Properties

Photo of Gary Welterlen and Carla Reeves
Gary Welterlen and Carla Reeves
"We both love this business. We strive to make life long relationships from each real estate transaction."

Full Profile >