03-14-2012, 08:58 AM
#1
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I picked up this genuine ivory handled Somerset Simpson brush last month. Just recently I learned from Gary Young, whose great uncle Alex founded the Simpson brush company, that Gary himself made this brush in 1987, when he was a teenager on vacation from school. This bit of history and personal connection to the Simpson family adds immeasurably to the value of the brush to me.
[Image: IMG_4196.jpg][Image: IMG_4200.jpg][Image: IMG_4202.jpg][Image: IMG_3751-1.jpg][Image: IMG_3750-1.jpg]

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 03-14-2012, 09:00 AM
#2
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I love the shape of that handle. I imagine it's very comfortable to hold and use.

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 03-14-2012, 09:09 AM
#3
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(03-14-2012, 09:00 AM)middlesmith Wrote: I love the shape of that handle. I imagine it's very comfortable to hold and use.

I'm with you Matt. Very nice John.

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 03-14-2012, 09:13 AM
#4
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(03-14-2012, 09:00 AM)middlesmith Wrote: I imagine it's very comfortable to hold and use.

It is indeed. It's relatively small, with knot 20mm and loft 44mm, and it fits really well in my hand.


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 03-14-2012, 09:26 AM
#5
  • slantman
  • Expert Shaver
  • Leesburg, Florida
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Beautiful John use it well.

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 03-14-2012, 09:55 AM
#6
  • Teiste
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Salt Lake City,UT
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Nice story and I bet that great brush,John!
Is the handle ergonomic?

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 03-14-2012, 10:45 AM
#7
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What a great looking brush! I've never seen a handle like that, congrats! Have you used it yet? Or will it be a show piece?

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 03-14-2012, 11:10 AM
#8
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(03-14-2012, 09:55 AM)Teiste Wrote: Is the handle ergonomic?
Yes, it's very comfortable. I actually like its handle better than standard "barrel" or cuboid shape handles, especially in small brushes.

(03-14-2012, 10:45 AM)reyrascon Wrote: Have you used it yet? Or will it be a show piece?
Yes, I've used it once so far. It's in my regular rotation. I like to use all of my brushes, rather than keeping any just for show. Just my own preference.


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 03-14-2012, 11:50 AM
#9
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Wow! That's a beauty!

Love it!

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 03-14-2012, 12:13 PM
#10
  • Johnny
  • Super Moderator
  • Wausau, Wisconsin, USA
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That is truly a beautiful brush with a great history. Thanks for sharing it with us.

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 03-14-2012, 05:19 PM
#11
  • function
  • lavendarian
  • Houston, Texas, US
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Who has two thumbs and is jealous of that great looking brush?

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 03-14-2012, 06:24 PM
#12
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If the look of this brush were not enough to make most of us drool, knowing the provenance makes a truly unique brush to enjoy. Congratulations, John.

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 03-20-2012, 09:03 AM
#13
  • HCB
  • Junior Member
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This is a wonderful looking brush with a super unique handle. Enjoy it and great score!

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 03-20-2012, 01:51 PM
#14
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Nice addition John.

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 03-21-2012, 05:26 AM
#15
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That's pretty cool, owning something Gary actually turned, and something made from ivory!

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 03-21-2012, 11:50 AM
#16
  • sp514
  • Member
  • Toronto, Canada
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Wow, what a piece of history. Enjoy it, it's a great looking one

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 03-22-2012, 02:55 PM
#17
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Great brush! Since the brush is ivory is there any special care?

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 03-22-2012, 03:10 PM
#18
  • TexBilly
  • Moderator Emeritus
  • Austin, TX
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Never sell, never sell! Beautiful brush!

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 03-22-2012, 03:19 PM
#19
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(03-22-2012, 02:55 PM)Horatio Wrote: Great brush! Since the brush is ivory is there any special care?

Well, I've gotten mixed information. Online instructions for ivory care specify never handling it with bare skin (wear cotton gloves instead), protecting from sunlight and excessive heat or cold, and never using anything to clean it except mild soap and water. However, other guys here on the forums with ivory brushes just recommend washing the hands before touching it. So I keep the brush on a bedroom shelf out of direct sunlight when it's not being used for shaving, and I almost always just wash my hands with soap and water before handling it. But I do keep a pair of really thin white cotton gloves handy just in case. And I've treated it with Renaissance Wax to try to protect further against any water damage or inadvertant exposure to skin oils. I'll repeat that treatment every 3-4 months.


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 03-26-2012, 11:18 AM
#20
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(03-22-2012, 03:19 PM)churchilllafemme Wrote:
(03-22-2012, 02:55 PM)Horatio Wrote: Great brush! Since the brush is ivory is there any special care?

Well, I've gotten mixed information. Online instructions for ivory care specify never handling it with bare skin (wear cotton gloves instead), protecting from sunlight and excessive heat or cold, and never using anything to clean it except mild soap and water. However, other guys here on the forums with ivory brushes just recommend washing the hands before touching it. So I keep the brush on a bedroom shelf out of direct sunlight when it's not being used for shaving, and I almost always just wash my hands with soap and water before handling it. But I do keep a pair of really thin white cotton gloves handy just in case. And I've treated it with Renaissance Wax to try to protect further against any water damage or inadvertant exposure to skin oils. I'll repeat that treatment every 3-4 months.

John

Since it was my 'baby' in the first place I reckon I might be able to add a couple of tips.....Wink

Washing hands before use is really all that's needed, even with an ivory brush around 25 years old (Blimey, I can't believe how long ago it was I knocked that one up!). Definitely keep the brush away from direct sunlight. You can see that the handle has reached its optimum 'dry out'.
As I am sure you are aware, ivory ages almost the same as certain woods, so general care is mostly the same as for a wooden handle brush. One problem is getting excess water into the cracking. I would advise cleaning off with nothing more than a damp cloth and allowing to dry out in normal room temperature.

Of course, if it all goes awry I do know where its twin brother is....Wink

Also, there must still be quite a few of 'my' brushes out there - I can't put a number on the actual amount I turned, knotted, etc during our ownership, but there were loads! Some brushes, depending on the design and when I made them, were given an extra lampblack mark on the bases - the initials GY were added. Dad, Grandad and Great Uncle Alex used to do the same on some brushes.
Oh and if anyone has the bright idea of trying to add these extra marks to the bottom of any brushes to increase their 'desirability' good luck as the 'font' used for the initials was not the same as our standard lampblacking. And I'm not going to disclose that!! Sorry!! Wink

Gary


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