21 July 2020

Weird and Wonderful Tobacco Pipes

To many, a tobacco pipe is truly a thing of beauty in that it is crafted with the utmost care and intricacy. For centuries, the design of these wooden vessels has remained largely unaltered, with many modern-day gentlemen still opting for the traditional style of an exceptionally gleaming wooden pipe. However, in recent years, the artistry of tobacco pipes has exploded, with many weird and wonderful creations not only hitting the market, but serving as works of art themselves. We take a look at some of the most eye-catching tobacco pipes that will certainly get you talking …

Earl, the Great Glass Skeleton

Traditionally, pipes are small wooden objects. But not this one. This pipe is a gigantic glass skeleton named ‘Earl’, created by glass artist Kevin Murray and includes eight functioning pieces made of glass. Following his passion for fillacello design, Murray worked on this astonishing pipe for over half a year to ensure every detail was correct. Using the fillacello technique to create blown glass, he was able to achieve an array of vibrant colours upon his skeleton, which is propped up by a specially-built stand. ‘Earl’s’ eyes may perhaps be the most intricate part of the pipe, with their geometric swirls and colourful segments giving the skeleton life. This phenomenal pipe is truly a work of art, displayed in the Massachusetts glass gallery and carrying a hefty price tag of a whopping 1 million dollars.


The Lattice Horn

Although visually reminiscent of the more traditional styles, the Lattice Horn pipe is still pretty weird and wacky in its sea sponge like appearance. Carrying a price tag of $2000, the carving of its dark holes must be exact; any slips of the hand could spoil the entire vessel, consequently decreasing its value and ruining its visual appeal. However, when crafted correctly, this intricate pipe would make a unique and lively addition to any pipe connoisseurs collection.


The Smoking Dragon

Over the years, many sailors will have enjoyed gazing out to sea whilst smoking their tobacco pipe – perhaps figuring out how to defeat a sea monster or two. If you consider yourself a bit of an adventurer and love the sound of sea monsters and dragons, The Smoking Dragon Tobacco Pipe is definitely for you. Crafted by Russian company Bon-Cadeau, this incredibly intricate pipe is made from a variety of valuable materials including gold, silver and blue coral. It also features almost 50 black and white diamonds, over 35 ruby shards and 6 sapphire fragments, as well as several pieces of tourmaline and tiger eye. And if that wasn’t enough, the wings and mouth of this extravagant basilisk can also be moved simultaneously while it revolves on a small piece of jade. Priced at a staggering $85,000, if you were looking for a show-stopping pipe glistening with treasure, we can tell you that this would certainly be it.

Although these tobacco pipes may not be your everyday objects, they are certainly ones to admire. Not only are they all beautifully crafted but they each bring a new and unique interpretation of the classic tobacco pipe. However, whilst it’s certainly nice to see a bit of creativity, sticking to your favourite range of Dunhill pipes is totally acceptable. After all, extravagance isn’t everything right gentlemen?