Monday, 10 August 2009

The View From the Shoe: The Squid Ink Kollective

Not only does the Squid Ink Kollective embody the independent spirit beloved to The View From the Shoe, the combo of Brian and Lynnea design and make some of the finest, most original T-shirts, bags and accessories you'll ever find. All that and the consistently best representations of narwhals in art. Ever.

You can find them and their things here:
Find us at or
Twitter name: @squidinkie.

Without further ado:

Thank you so much for your time. So, Louboutin or Converse?
Luba-wha? It’s extremely ironic that we now work in the fashion industry. Neither of us could be farther from fashion oriented – but as everyone knows, it’s those people that are the frontrunners of trends.

What do you do?
We design and screen print apparel and posters, using a manual screen press with eco-friendly inks, and sell on Etsy ( Etsy is a site for sellers of handmade items, food to furniture, it’s a great way to buy directly from the makers(books too!).
Brian: I am an artist, moreover a printmaker that has a firm commitment to not taking myself too seriously while constantly working too hard. I’m a regular guy.
Lynnea: I picked up sewing because it seemed like a good skill to have when the apocalypse comes. I also take care of practical things like our website and finances.

Why is there no one in the world who does it quite like you?
There are lots of people trying to do what we’re doing, which is great. We just provide an eclectic stock to make an interesting cup of soup.

What do you really, really love about it?
Brian: Everything, the struggle, obsession, frustration and accomplishment. I love to have something to work very hard on, I feel like it’s a blessing just to know what I want these days.
Lynnea: Making our own hours. Going swimming when we feel like it. Working in my pyjamas. And customer appreciation goes to us, and no one else.

A bit more time in the day, or a bit more money in the bank?
Brian: Time. That’s a no brainer.
Lynnea: Scrilla. Cause I love what I do to make money.

Imagine you “make it”. You wake up, and imagine the day ahead. Tell us about breakfast.
Brian: I don’t think much would change, black coffee, toast with Norwegian cheese and cherry jam, a cigarette and back to work.
Lynnea: The only reason I’ve ever wanted to make big bucks was to spread it around. Although breakfast would definitely be eaten in our self-designed kitchen, which would be a combination container house/cob house.

What’s your Jimmy Choo? And what’s just cobblers?
Is that ironic because Jimmy Choo is a cobbler? We’re confused here.

Tell us about the last time a fan made you feel 100 feet tall.
We recently had a customer who found us after a long search – he had bought one of our shirts at a small boutique, fell in love with it, and spent the next year trying to figure out where it came from (that boutique wasn’t very on top of their consignments). He contacted us, wanting to buy a lifetime supply of shirts, just in case the laundromat eats his shirt, he gets attacked by a giant squid, “or some sort of benny hill type chase occurs and [he] ends up in a vat of shirt-destroying liquid surrounded by also shirt-destroying 70’s type girls.” That guy rules.

Independent and poor, or under contract and rich?
Poor indies for now. We’re gonna make it!

Do you remember that bit on Play Away where Brian Cant stood behind people and did the actions whilst they spoke? If you could choose anyone to stand behind you and do the actions to your sales pitch, who would it be and why?
Brian: Some sort of dancing cat, who doesn’t like a dancing cat, that’s amazing!
Lynnea: Hell no. We’re from Texas! Thank Jeebus for YouTube. Also, I think we did that in Girl Scouts. I’d say David Cross and Amy Sedaris, cause they’re nuts and so is life.

Frocks or socks?
Brian: socks.
Lynnea: frocks.


  1. No one does narwhals quite like they do, which is why they're so cool.

  2. Hi Sarah - will your shoes be polished for next week?

  3. We are cool! Thanks so much for having us Dan. Narwhals 4 eva!

  4. Thank you so much for coming over!

  5. That's an interesting interview of a couple of very interesting people.

  6. love the buyer who fears falling into shirt-destroying vat!

  7. Great post, agree with nifty knits, i love the buyer! haha