Broke and Tipple: Terje Sjöström
‘Broke and Tipple’ is the work of Terje Sjöström who creates Handmade cycling inspired design in his lean-to workshop at home in Fishponds.
Inspiration first struck when Terje and his wife-to-be Beth needed table decorations for their wedding, and after receiving many compliments for his bike chain flower, a seed was planted. Now selling through Etsy, Terje carves out unique designs from old bike parts and reclaimed wood using inherited tools, and has sold pieces that serve the purpose of showing your love, holding your records and even dispensing your toilet roll. Considering the materials he uses, the end result is surprisingly elegant and understated; with each piece hiding it’s own well-placed detail. You can’t beat Scandi design! Read on for Terje’s answers to my questions and to see behind the scenes of Broke and Tipple.
Which work is a personal favourite of yours & why?
I do really like spelling out words from bicycle chains. It’s a simple idea yet very pleasing – a lot like building with Lego.
What inspired you to do what you do? What motivates you?
It’s always been about the recycling ethos, and that I happened to accumulate a bunch of bike stuff. I love building things but also finding simple engineering solutions using random materials instead of buying a quicker and easier solution off the shelf.
How easy/hard has it been to get going with it? What advice would you give to people who can't stop making things?
It feels like it’s been easy but I’ve put in a lot of hours when I think about it, slowly getting better. That’s key I think. Small steps and keeping a long-term vision.
There's the saying 'The earth without art is just 'eh'. What do you think?
Yes, that’s good!
What’s you favourite bike bit at the moment?
The child seat is pretty handy at the moment. And I enjoy bashing ball bearings into wood.