"Message in a bottle" necklace by Random Vintage
1. Hi Claire, tell us what inspired you to start your business.
When I was little my grandmother used to give me bits and pieces of broken costume jewellery. When I came across them years later, I had the idea of making new pieces out of it, as I wanted to bring them back to life in a modern, more wearable style. It seemed such a waste having these pretty pieces tucked away because they were damaged or out of style. The more Random Vintage has developed, the more passionate I’ve become about recycling and re-using unwanted or unloved vintage items and giving them a new lease of life.
The lovely - and talented - Claire Weeks of Random Vintage
2. And what inspires you now?
I visit a lot of antiques fairs and flea markets, looking for vintage pieces to incorporate into my work. These shows can be very inspiring - seeing the different colour combinations, different textures, and how jewellery styles have changed over time. I also look at old books and fairy stories and try to create pieces with a theme in mind.
For the Random Vintage collection I make one-off individual pieces using worn and loved vintage items such as brooches, charms, rosarys, religious relics, old lockets and earrings and mix these with beautiful precious and semi-precious stones, vintage beads and rhinestones to make unique statement pieces.
"Summer in Paris" necklace - Claire loves all things French
The Random Vintage Repeatables collection uses a mixture of new 'vintage' style items to create fun, quirky, wearable and affordable pieces. I also make vintage style decorations, headbands and vintage bunting.
4. Why did you want to be part of “It’s darling!”?
Well as a vintage and handmade fan I just had to be a part of it - and the fact that it’s set in beautiful Bath is the icing on the cake! I can’t wait to see all the goodies and meet all those super talented sellers.
5. Tell us what you’re passionate about.
I love French films, I’m slightly obsessed with France hence a lot of French pieces are incorporated into my jewellery, and I’m brushing up on my French as I’m planning a trip to the Parisian flea markets to stock up on vintage goodies. Flea markets are my guilty pleasure, I absolutely love the hunt for treasures, I get stomach flips as soon as I arrive at a flea market , finding someone’s unwanted bits and seeing the potential they hold is very exciting. I love unpacking my finds when I get home and giving them a good clean up and then putting them to use.
6. What’s your three second wisdom – life or crafting advice?!
If you’re in a creative rut, don’t force it! If you’re trying to make things and are feeling uninspired, it’s just not going to happen no matter how hard you try. Do something else and go back to it when you feel the creative juices flowing.
7. What’s your desert island survival pack?
My ipod, sun lotion (as I burn easily!) and Viggo Mortensen, though it have would have to be on the condition he was dressed as Aragorn.
8. What in your life would you say is “It’s darling!”?
I love collecting things in miniature - tiny dolls, itty bitty figurines. I have a particular penchant for mini rabbits, I don’t know why, maybe it’s an Alice in Wonderland thing. A while ago I found an amazing Belgian seller on ETSY called ingie, she makes the cutest mini rabbits out of mohair, I now have quite a collection of these little dears.
Claire loves anything minature like these little rabbits
To find out more about Claire and Random Vintage go to www.randomvintage.co.uk and www.randomvintagemusings.blogspot.com