Danish Estates: Poul Ilsted Sandblasted Bulldog with Snakewood Tobacco Pipe

Product Number: 004-001-35133

The late Poul Ilsted sadly passed away in 2017, but will forever be known as both an extremely talented artisan in his own right, and as a mentor to others, including Joao Reis, Manduela, and Alexander Tupitsyn. The "Master of Facets" himself, Ilsted got his start working for Erik Nording, who gave him his first blocks of briar as well as his first encouraging words, before splitting off from his factory and founding the Svendborg pipe factory with Jens "Tao" Nielsen. After parting ways with Tao, he re-joined with Nording, then worked for W.Ø.Larsen for almost two years before striking out on his own and making pipes under his own name. A self-described perfectionist, Ilsted crafted pipes that showcase a very clean, crisp, and refined sense of line about them, with many of his works featuring firm ridgelines and structural panels: this Bulldog being an excellent example.

Though Ilsted was a prevalent carver of bent Bulldogs, his straight renditions of the shape are few and far between, this particular example being one of only a handful we've ever seen from the artisan. A desirable pipe thanks to its rare profile alone, this pipe's appeal is further enhanced by its remarkably compact overall footprint of just over five inches. Though rather small and pleasantly light, there's an impressive amount of substance present here, not in its weight but in its muscular sense of line. The transition here is wide enough to comfortably drape a digit, and it leads to a rather thick shank possessed of the bulldog's iconic diamond shaping, the visual broadness here tempered by the flat, angular panels which connect them. This shaping continues into the base of the stem here, the black vulcanite tapering neatly toward the button while a band of snakewood at the stem base offers some unique grain and a warm color. Up front, the bowl stands atop a firm heel which acts as the terminus of the undermost ridge lining the shank, while its flanks are wrapped and framed by the pair of ridges which similarly line the shank's flanks. These twin ridges create rounded panels near the bottom of the bowl and highlight said bowl's measured flare upward toward a pair of beadlines, leading to a domed taper to the flat rim. Dressed in a crisp, inky sandblast, the stummel here showcases plenty of handsome grain, with ring grain cascading down the bowl and a rich texture throughout for the fingers to appreciate.

-John McElheny
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Measurements & Other Details

Minor Rim Darkening

ILSTED (In Script)
  • Length: 5.04 in./128.02 mm.
  • Weight: 1.28 oz./36.29 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.80 in./45.72 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.46 in./37.08 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.72 in./18.29 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.61 in./40.89 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Bulldog
  • Finish: Sandblast
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: Denmark
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