Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Ten year celebration P H bows Musafia cases arrive

To mark the ten year celebration of Peter Hembrough bows two top specification Musafia cases have arrived.  I have had a long and happy relationship with this case company and we together decided to design a Musafia just for this occasion, unlike any other and with their own certification.  Rare to the UK due to worldwide demand I am delighted they are here for the discerning musician to buy at £1,650.   Weighing just 2.6k they are wonderfully light but massively strong and if you cherish your violin and bows I cannot think of a better case to protect them during transit.   If you are keen then contact quickly because whenever I stock Musafia I dont have them for long.....although it is my ten year anniversary I have been selling fine french bows for a shocking forty years this year!

Monday, 1 May 2017

1670 Francesco Rugeri

Here is the most delightful Cremonese violin by the great Francesco Rugeri.  When you have the opportunity to help people buy instruments of this calibre all you can do is smile!  The table on this violin is of special note given its tremendous patina.  It has a large personality when played and it reminds you of a very fine Italian car in that when you put your foot down on the accelerator there is plenty of power in reserve.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Michael Taylor reminisces about Jean-Jacques Millant

There is little doubt, given the passage of time, that after the death of Eugene Sartory in 1946 the mantle of greatest living bow maker fell upon two very different personalities, Emile Auguste Ouchard and the reclusive Jean-Jacques Millant.  In 1997, one year before Millant's death the renowned British bow maker Michael Taylor and the American bow collector Sidney Bowden paid him a visit at his shop in Paris.

Jean-Jacques was a short, ruggedly built man of about five feet seven inches high.  Upon meeting him he came across very much as a person from the country, not for him any Parisienne pretentiousness!   Indeed, in Michael Taylor's view, this down to earth, straightforward character came as a real surprise and a breath of fresh air. 
Upon entering the the shop there was a small lobby area.  On the left, further in, was his very small workshop.  Very 'old school' and with none of the large machinery one might expect today.  
When our two intrepid explorers arrived Jean-Jacques was just about to go fishing (doesn't this remind you of Francois Xavier Tourte who upon finishing his work for the day went fishing in the Seine?)  But when meeting Michael and Sidney he greeted them with a broad smile; imbued with a sunny nature he was kind to guests.  Dotted around the workshop were also many paintings Jean-Jacques had done, all stacked leaning against the walls and covered in dust.  Also a great deal of old fishing tackle and rods, nothing clean or new.  It was clear to our guests that Jean-Jacques was actually keener to talk about fishing than the finer points of bow making! 

Some makers spend a great deal of time speaking up their bows, others simply let their bows speak for themselves.  Jean-Jacques clearly put an exceptional amount of thought into his bow making, whilst pretending to the world it was the last thing on his mind.  His comments on the bows of Dominique Peccatte in the Paul Childs book are proof of his deep thought processes regarding fine bows.  Lucky, indeed, is the person who owns one one this great master's bows.

Sunday, 18 December 2016

A very rare sight ..... two modele experimental Jean Jacques Millant bows

Jean Jacques Millant bows are highly desirable on the international market, his prices are very strong indeed.  From 1960-1970 he made his systeme brevete modele experimental bows, quickly bought by top performers (the octagonal one on this page was owned by Michael Rabin and sold through Peter Hembrough bows some years ago) and shrewd collectors as it was known his output was slow and carefully judged.  Little is written about him and so early in the new year an article about this great maker drawing on reminiscences from colleagues who met and knew him.

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Fine English bows for sale.

This month we have two Sidney Yeoman Hill bows and William Watson bow with no damage for sale.  The Hill bows are both top of the range stamped W.E. Hill and sons.  One is silver and ebony with a plain frog, the other is a Gold and Tortoiseshell Fleur de Lys both dating from the late 1920's.  Here is also a rare opportunity to buy a Gold and Tortoiseshell William Watson Coronet model bow.

Tuesday, 12 July 2016


Those of you who have seen this site over the years know that each summer I like to thank my customers with a very real bargain hidden within the stock.  This year is no exception and over this week if you keep a beady eye on the site i dont think you shall be disappointed!  best wishes and have a lovely summer!