A WOMAN’S jewellery business, founded in lockdown, has become a huge success. . . thanks to breastmilk!

Lauren Devine, who was raised in East Lothian, met fellow Dalkeith resident Victoria Bradley – a business advisor at Edinburgh Napier University – via social media when they were both studying jewellery-making.

Former Ormiston Primary and Ross High School pupil Lauren was looking to leave her career in corporate banking and, after several conversations with Victoria, they set up Boob Bling, a company which transforms breastmilk into ‘pearls’ and sets them in custom jewellery.

Lauren, 37, said: “I had two very young children and I was looking at things I could do to work around them. I wanted to leave the corporate world and do something a bit more creative.

“Jewellery was an obvious thing for me.

“I absolutely love jewellery and we were both breastfeeding mums so were looking for something to commemorate those breastfeeding journeys.

“And there was nothing on the market that suited our style, so we decided to create a brand and products that did.”

Launched in March last year, Boob Bling has already had an overwhelmingly positive response from customers, and even made it into the pages of The Times last Tuesday.

And Lauren told the Courier that company sales in the first quarter of this year matched those of last year’s entire nine months of trading.

Lauren – who is mum to daughters Coral, five, and Summer, three – explained that she and Victoria – mum to two-year-old daughter Nesta – “threw ideas back and forward” when they met for coffee.

She said: “Victoria and I were both breastfeeding mums and we basically noticed a huge gap in the market for a company that did really modern, cool jewellery, with a really cool brand as well.

“We’re both pretty passionate about breastfeeding, passionate about the ‘normalise’ movement; we just wanted to create something that would really be special for breastfeeding mums.”

The precise method of creating the breastmilk jewellery is a closely guarded trade secret, but Lauren does reveal that she processes and prepares the milk herself in her own home studio, and sets it in bespoke silver and gold pieces made for the company by jewellers including Heather Sawers and award-winning goldsmith Chay McClory.

Lauren said: “It took lots and lots of research, and trial and error – about a year’s worth, actually – to get the formula perfect for making the breastmilk pearls.

“It’s not just something we decided overnight to do, and just jumped in and did it. We did a lot of research to make sure we did it right.

“It’s a really technical process, a time-consuming process, a lot of blood, sweat and tears goes into it – but it’s absolutely worth it when we get the feedback from the customer.”

While reaction has been somewhat mixed – “People who don’t really get the concept think it’s a bit weird and we’ve had people say it’s disgusting,” said Lauren – most of the responses they have received have been overwhelmingly positive.

Lauren said: “The pieces are so precious to our customers, they’re so sentimental. And we’ve got a few thousand followers on Instagram who absolutely love the brand; it’s kind of like a community.”

The businesswomen’s ethos is the “normality” of breastfeeding, and the company runs a monthly competition called #titofthemonth

Breastfeeding women are invited to contribute a photo of themselves feeding their baby for the company Instagram account, and the winner each month is awarded a boob-related prize.

Lauren said: “We’re so supportive of the normalise breastfeeding movement because, for us, breastfeeding is the most normal thing you can do in the world, and how it can be perceived as disgusting just baffles me.”

To find out more, go to boobbling.co.uk