After perusing the artisanal collections of Bespoke Global, I'm adding a hand-stitched falcon hood and a customized shooter kit to my wishlist. Founders Gwen Carlton and Pippa McArdle have gathered some of the world’s best artisans to comprise the eclectic collection of Bespoke Global, and the result is an amalgamation of the most beautifully crafted works of functional art. Recently, a new luxury leisure collection was added to their highly tailored, made-to-order home furnishings.
One series we really enjoy is the Wood Bicycles by Masterworks, reminiscent of the wooden toy puzzles kids are fond of. Fully functional and highly decorative, the line of bicycles evokes the Hot Rod era and American craftsmanship. Intricate embellishments adorn the bike’s wooden frame.
The showstopper for this line is the wooden pedi-cab which pays homage to the classic rickshaw. With just as much detailing and custom wood work on its cherry/ mahogany frame and chariot, it is a superb vehicle. The hands and minds behind Masterworks are Bill Holloway and Mauro Hernandez. Based out of San Jose, they handcraft each bike with salvaged wood and 100 hours of work. Now we only want to know — who’s driving?
I have to get into falconry just so I can own one of these exquisite hoods by world-reknowned falcon head-dresser Ken Hooke. Hand-stitched for falcons, hawks, and eagles, these hoods will wow enthusiasts with their attention to detail and high quality components. In beautiful shades, they are constructed from calf, goat, and exotic lizard skins.
Personally, I love the oriental-inspired Exclusive Khan Hood. Befit for a ruler of the skies and named after Ghengis, this beauty is made for a female Saker falcon. This one is made from calf leather, red monitor lizard, and a horse hair top knot to show those other birds who’s boss.
Who could pass up the customized reels offered by Willow Classic Reels? Precisely crafted and one-of-a-kind, these fishing gadgets are just gorgeous and made from materials like hand pressed flowers and South African maple burl. The Laser Cut Reel, with marble handle, is spectacular with its detailed laser design in brass and steel. With accouterments this fine, pass the worms.
Also for the fishing variety are the custom fly fishing rods made by artisan William “Bill” Oyster, a celebrated rod maker and the only one who personally hand engraves each reel. Useful as well as collectible, each Tonkin bamboo rod requires 40 to 100 hours of labor and is crafted from Oyster’s artistic eye combined with his engineering skills.
Bespoke Global features an exclusive choice, the Select Bespoke Global Fly Rod. Created just for Bespoke, the hand engraved reel seat shows an intricate, steel-carved design complimenting a richly flamed cane, and would be just as fitting for show as it is in the water.
Generally pretty garish, foosball tables bring to mind badly lit bars and sticky, beer-covered floors. Italian designers, Teckell, dispel this image with foosball tables like the Cristallano – Gold LE. Hand-made and worthy of an art gallery, it is constructed with transparent crystal glass and 24K gold plated handles and accessories. We know how much Europeans value football (or soccer if you'd rather) and as such each 24K gold plated player is uniquely die-cast and hand finished. The Cristallano is available as part of a limited edition of 50 for $24,000.
In my opinion, the crème de la crème of the leisure category are the luscious looking canoes constructed by master artisan Nick Schade. Begot from his own passion for canoeing and kayaking, his boats feature ravishing lines as well as smooth-motion utility.
The Stitch and Glue Night Heron is forged from the same principles as his Night Heron — which is in the MOMA’s permanent collection — and both utilize skills used by the Inuit people of Greenland. In differing colors, the puzzle shapes call attention to the masterly design of the boat and are conducive for elongating pieces of wood.
All these and more can be seen at BespokeGlobal.com. Prices range from $36 for a hand-stitched baseball to $140,000 for a hand-carved Game table by Michael Coffey.
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