Todd Johnson: Sandblasted Egg with 24K Gold Leaf (Hoplite)

Product Number: 002-194-0126

Typically when Todd Johnson fashions a long-shanked piece, the American artisan presents a gently arching form, with a slight flare toward the shank end. In this Egg, however, Johnson opted instead for a sleek, arrow straight disposition, leading the eye toward the forward-urging, canted bowl. Its flanks are ergonomically rounded and taper consistently toward the rim and heel from the tilted waistline.

Stunning shaping aside, though, it's time to talk about the finish, the highlight of this piece. We've seen Todd use gold leaf once before — gold hammered into an ultra-fine sheet that goes far beyond, even, paper thin. The briar was, first, sandblasted for a texture more receptive to the gold leaf, and then the 24K gold was layered on top using a fine-tipped brush. The entire finishing process lasted two weeks, with each of the three layers of gold leaf requiring a significant amount of drying time. The results speak for themselves though. It's a stunning pipe, catching the light in ways that standard finishes are incapable of, and drawing focus to the shape's lines and form without the distraction of the briar's natural grain.

-Truett Smith
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 6.40 in./162.56 mm.
  • Weight: 1.22 oz./34.47 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.94 in./49.28 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.68 in./42.67 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.81 in./20.57 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.45 in./36.83 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Cutty
  • Finish: Sandblast
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: United States
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