Pete Prevost is an American pipe maker living in Nashville, Tennessee. Formerly a touring musician, Pete dived head-first into pipe making. It served him well, as he is now the Executive VP and Director of Production at BriarWorks International, on top of managing his own brand of private, handmade pipes as well.
Shane Ireland, our resident Pipe Manager, recently sat down with Pete to discuss his private brand and what he's currently working on with BriarWorks International. Here's a quick look at Pete's accomplishments so far and a glimpse at his plans for the future:
Pete's been a pipe smoker for a while now, telling Shane, "I got a corn cob and some Captain Black from a drugstore when I was eighteen. Slowly, I started upgrading to better pipes and developing a taste for good tobaccos." His journey into pipe making, however, didn't start until a little later.
He began finishing "pipe kits" and eventually found himself in the company of already well-established pipe makers. He tells Shane:
"I made about six pipe kits before I met Jody at a Nashville pipe club meeting. He invited me to his shop to learn how to work with the tools I had. After making my next six pipes in his shop, he introduced me to Todd Johnson. I started working daily with Todd, and learned just about everything I know there. I also, became close friends with Bruce Weaver during those early years. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to learn properly, and not have to fumble around in the dark for years."
Todd Johnson, Bruce Weaver, and Jody Davis are all listed among Prevost's strongest influences — Todd now a business partner and Jody a close friend. Pete was kind enough to share an anecdote with us about his interaction with Jody.
"Growing up my favorite guitarist was Jody Davis. Years later, I found out he was renowned pipe maker. Then, some time after that I met him, and started to learn proper pipe making from him. Now, Jody is one of my best friends. On my 30th birthday my wife joked with Jody's wife about buying a J. Davis pipe for me since I had always wanted one of his, but could never afford one. Apparently, she told Jody about this, and he ended up giving me one as a gift, under the condition that I would make him a pipe. It's great, and very special to me."
Together with Todd Johnson, Pete Prevost is an integral part of BriarWorks International. As the Executive VP and the Director of Production, he oversees every aspect of production for the Icarus, Neptune, and BriarWorks lines alike. Having recently released the first installment of BriarWorks' Signature Series, Pete had some insight into the future of the brand.
"We have some cool stuff in the works," he tells us, "The next [Signature Series] pipe to come out will be a Todd Johnson Blowfish." Both the Blowfish and the Calabash featured recently on the site are some of Todd's signatures, though Pete also shared plans of adding one of his own to the lineup, stating, "I am going to make a version of my Long Shank Sitter for the Signature line."
These shapes aren't going to be exclusively designed by the BriarWorks team, however. They plan on reaching out to friends and respected artisans from all around to join in on the series. Pete tells us that Jody Davis, for example, will also be producing his Stemless Bulldog for the prestigious line.
" I have a beautiful wife and two wonderful young children that I love very much, and with the launch of BriarWorks there simply was not enough time to make handmade pipes without compromising precious hours at home. Fortunately, we are at a point with the factory that I am able to breathe a little easier and devote some time to my own handmade pipes."
There are several reasons to invest in one of Pete's handmade pipes. His careful attention to detail and expert blend of Danish, American, and Industrial Design influences have done well to set him apart. Artisan-grade pipes are a real investment, and Pete believes that people should "make informed decisions when buying pipes." It's for that reason that Prevost cuts no corners in his designs, saying:
"I am grateful to be able to create pipes that people want to add to their collection. It means more to me than anyone can understand. I know that for a lot of people, buying one of my pipes is a lot of money. I want to respect them by not cutting corners, and taking time and care when finishing out a pipe."
And there you have it: a quick look at Pete Prevost from his introduction into pipe making to his plans for the future. If you'd like to check out some of Pete's work, check out his product page on the site! Or visit either the BriarWorks, Neptune, or Icarus categories in our New section as well!
Have a favorite Prevost design? Share your story with us in the comments section below!