Ruth Schmid – QHERE

Ruth SchmidLife sometimes takes unexpected turns. When Ruth arrived in Cambridge with her husband and two kids in 2002, she was a Swiss sociologist who had worked to help people return to work after unemployment. The move to Cambridge opened the possibility to reinvent herself as a designer, where she started making bags from used advertising banner materials. In 2004, the QHERE label was born, suggested by her daughter.

For several years she was a regular at the All Saints Crafts Market, while a studio in the back of her garden provided the space for the raw materials, the ideas, and the sewing machine. However, when the opening of the Cambridge Art Salon in 2011 offered a more sheltered outlet, she didn’t have to think twice –  Ruth set up a studio in the Salon, where painters, hat-makers, and ceramicists provided a creative backdrop for her work. Always on the search for new designs and materials, Ruth started working with raw material found in Cambridge, such as bicycle inner tubes. The glossy surfaces, elasticity and versatility make them a great basis for elegant handbags, weather-proof laptop cases, and stunning new covers for chairs.

Every QHERE product is unique and handmade by Ruth, and customers can choose materials and shapes for a bespoke handbag or rucksack that has exactly the number and size of pockets they need. Thanks to enthusiastic new and returning customers, QHERE has become an important part of the Cambridge crafts scene.