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Ligne Bretagne Pipe #1711lb

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This pipe may become a minor celebrity! Pipes & Tobaccos magazine was out here yesterday for the afternoon, interviewing Emily and myself for a new article in the magazine. They shot a lot of photos of the workshop, but unfortunately I didn't have any Talbert Briars, Halloween pipes, or anything of that sort finished and ready for photography. I did, however, have this - An ideal example of the best that Ligne Bretagne offers, the top of the tops. As the sole finished representative of our work, the fellow took a lot of pics of it. Given the nature of publication, I can't guarantee that it will end up in the magazine but it's quite likely, so whoever buys this one is probably going to have a pipe that's been on the newsstands!

As for the pipe itself, the grade 5 description reads - "The top grade, very rarely produced, with truly extraordinary grain and/or briar flawlessness. Smooth finish only." This will be the first Grade 5 for 2017, and usually I see 1-3 in a year at most, out of roughly 150 Ligne Bretagnes produced annually. It's not totally perfect, it does have a couple of needlepoint spots, but the more-than-extraordinary grain more than makes up for it. I knew it was going to be a special pipe going in, but I had no idea how special until I got to the final sanding. I finished it using some old techniques I know for darkening the grain in the wood, then gave it a very transparent tint of amber stain to bring out that "golden" hue, then carefully sanded the whole thing again so that all the coloring would be solely in the grain... The goal being this "Natural-but-contrast-enhanced" look that I love.