When starting up a business most people think of licenses, business rates, taxes, and insurance. However, Lindsay Kirkcaldy isn’t most people! Before she launched Isaac’s Bazaar she got in touch with us to find out the best way she could support homeless people in Liverpool with her new business. We met in a coffee shop at the start of the year and while I would happily have sat and spoke to Lindsay forever, she never would have got around to launching her exciting new business if I kept her there. A few months and one global pandemic later, Isaac’s Bazaar was officially born…
Julianna: Tell us a bit about the business and what you do!
Lindsay: My business is Isaac’s Bazaar, an online shop specialising in creating unique furnishings and art for your home. Everything I offer is inspired by music, exclusively designed (by me!) and handmade in the UK. Alongside the products I’ve made for my shop, my concept is to enable my customers to celebrate the soundtrack of their lives in their homes and create their own future heirloom furniture – kind of like your own personal memorabilia inspired by the most important music from your life – with my bespoke design and upholstery service.
Julianna: Why did you go for the name ‘Isaac’s Bazaar’?
Lindsay: It was after having my son (Isaac) that I sought a new career and creative outlet and retrained in upholstery, so it only seems right to name the business after him! The “bazaar” part is because I didn’t want to just be tied to one product or service – I love upholstering and upcycling pieces that we’re otherwise headed for landfill and giving old family heirlooms a new lease of life, but also enjoy creating new pieces, cushions and art prints and I’ve got lots of plans for a variety of products to showcase my designs in the future. And bazaar just sounded more interesting than shop or market!
Julianna: What made you choose The Whitechapel Centre? And why is it important to you?
Lindsay: In this day and age, living in a wealthy country there should be absolutely no reason for anyone to be without a home or food. I’ve felt sickened when I’ve personally witnessed the way that some of the most vulnerable people can be treated by members of the general public on street. For the most part it’s sheer luck of the circumstances you’re born in to that means you can have and keep a home. The job insecurity and austerity measures of recent years have highlighted how easily life can become very difficult very quickly, and there’s nothing quite like a global pandemic that impacts everything to shine a spotlight on how precarious all of our current circumstances are.
When I decided to retrain and set up my business I had two objectives – to make beautiful things and to use my skills to try to do some good. Given that my products and services are centred on homewares, there seems a nice synergy in using that platform to support a homeless charity. Being from Liverpool, it’s the staff and volunteers of The Whitechapel Centre that I have seen doing the good work on the streets, so I’ve always known that’s where I wanted to focus my charitable efforts. In fact, I reached out before I’d even completed my training so I could build it in from the start! Now more than ever I think we really need some kindness and to take care of each other.