About the Art
Skölland (Sk-ohl-and)-distinctive, beautifully dark wearable art that puts your Personality in Metal.
A brand for those who want their jewelry to reflect their creativity, alternative style & individuality.
Skölland was created to be a haven for those who want quality pieces but cannot stand the look and style of traditional fine jewelry. The word “Skölland” is a term coined by the owner, Claire Steckel. The inspiration for the word came from the old Norse interjection “skål” (an interjection commonly used to toast the good health of someone, or a phrase used in celebration- typically meaning ”cheers”)
Claire wanted the name to embody the elation she felt when she was finally able to communicate her unique style through crafted pieces. The jewelry not only resembled her, but it also reflected the strength required to challenge the status quo of traditional jewelry. Her design & inspirations for Skölland stem from history, European & Nordic cultures, rugged textures, and a style known as “brutalism”. When meshed together, these ideas create a style that is distinctly Skölland.
Skölland is a woman-owned, grassroots business that was built from the ground up. Skölland’s roots were first planted in Claire’s first business, “Claire’s Creative Designs ’” which she ran from 2015-2019. Each piece of equipment used for jewelry making was sourced one at a time, building the business slowly from resilience, dedication & hard work. Currently, all pieces are either hand fabricated or cast in Claire’s home-based studio located in Wisconsin. Each sterling & gold alloy used is carefully selected for each design to produce a quality piece. Improving technique & maintaining or exceeding quality are core values that Skolland embodies. Claire focuses on R&D on days she is not fulfilling orders, striving to improve on the processes for her made-to-order lines, and experimenting with new designs.
Skölland is here to stay for those, like Claire, who have struggled to find themselves in a piece of jewelry. You can’t be defined by simple words on a bracelet or a common chain. Jewelry is an extension of you and is deeply personal-life’s too short to settle for jewelry that just doesn’t communicate you. Are you ready to challenge the status quo, and put your Personality In Metal?
About the Artist
Metalsmith & one-woman-show- Claire was born in Chicago, Illinois. Throughout her childhood, she lived in different states in the Midwest, East Coast, and the Southern United States, never settling in one place for too long. Being neurodivergent, one of Claire's biggest struggles has been communicating with others. She struggled to find common ground with others her age while growing up because she had many interests that were deemed atypical. Through jewelry making, she discovered that jewelry can be used as a form of communication. Making it a medium for conveying her individual style and harnessing it to tell her customer's stories.
When Claire was in her late teens, she stumbled upon a beading shop within walking distance of her first apartment that ignited her interest in jewelry making. Realizing early on that beading was limiting and couldn’t create the designs she dreamed of, she spent years teaching herself metalsmithing techniques and working under master goldsmiths to learn how to bring her ideas to life. As a part-time hobby turned full-time career, Claire now forges and designs everything in her home studio using traditional and innovative metalsmithing techniques.
In her spare time, she can be found foraging, cooking, reading & playing the piano.