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Ligne Bretagne Pipe #1812lb

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The briar on this pipe was so hard that sandblasting it was a bit ridiculous - First pass basically polished the wood, and it took quite a bit of careful blasting to bring out the extremely tight ring patterns while keeping the overall shape lines. The age ring packing is *tight* - Look at the "profile" pic above in large version, at the ring detail up near the bowl rim in back. That's a LOT of grain density on a briar bowl, a lot of years of growth packed into a single bowl. That detail, plus the coloration of the natural horn stem, was what ultimately spurred us to finish it in black, as a solid monochrome color like this works best for showing really intricate details. Plus, the stem was a challenge - It's a real stunner, in my opinion, with a beautiful color range from soft milky white to smoky charcoal with strains of warm brown. The opaque black bowl lets the stem's detail shine more, and the polished natural bowl rim give it a bit of wood color tone to call to the autumn brownish red tints near the bit.