I have always loved making stuff, being creative and messy, so jewellery making seemed to suit me. Not fiddling about with precious metals and dangerous hot solders, but fun things like cutting up old necklaces and putting them back together in new ways.
After I was made redundant from a job that I really loved (in a book shop, sigh!) I decided to try and turn a long standing hobby into a more serious “job”! It was 2009/2010 and the global economy was not healthy so I didn’t know if I’d get another job any time soon. I came up with the name and an idea for the logo pretty quickly, and had a friend design the logo for me. I was trying to describe my jewellery making style to someone and said the word ‘squinty’, it wasn’t the word I was looking for (to this day I’m still not sure exactly what that word was), but the Squinty Bridge is the nickname give by locals to the Clyde Arc Bridge, and I live near it, so it seemed to suit! The logo is based on the shape of the bridge and it’s reflection in the water.
I had always reused old jewellery so I decided that I would continue to do so, and use mostly recycled components. Finding materials to use involves fun days out wandering around charity shops with friends, searching beaches for pottery and glass or being given old and broken jewellery to use by folks who are having a clear out. Because of this I can’t make too many of one design, so many of the items I create are totally unique, one off pieces.
I recycle, repurpose and upcycle as much as possible. I want to be as environmentally friendly as possible, and to have a business that is sustainable and doesn’t create much waste. Even the gift bags, bubble wrap and tissue paper I use are reused as much as possible.
Squinty Stuff was born out of redundancy, and is now, 7 years later and on the third redundancy, taking tentative steps down a new path.