01-20-2013, 12:08 PM
#1
  • VT_Hokie
  • 2-Band Bandito
  • Charleston, SC
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You know what I mean, not dismissing all the knowledge and experience that you've gained over several years of participating in this community, but material wise.

Lately I find myself longing for things that I never wanted before. At the same time, I feel a bit overwhelmed by the immense collection that I already have at my fingertips.

It's as if I'm looking for more solace and simplicity in my life, Shave den included.

Instead of having 7 brushes, 5 razors, more blades, soaps, creams, aftershaves and miscellaneous shaving related apparel than you can shake a stick at. Wouldn't it be refreshing to just take a clean sweep of things and start over?

Keep what you love, lose what you don't.

By now I know what I want and need out of everything in my den. I feel that by possibly reducing the quantity and focusing on quality that I would be able to devote more time and attention to each item and really make the most out of what I have.

Sometimes I feel that in an age of overindulgence and reckless acquisition right at our fingertips, that sometimes we miss the point of what we set out to accomplish in the first place. It makes me feel silly quite honestly.

What would your Grandfather think of your shave den? I know it's a hobby and all, but I can't help to wonder at what point is it too much?

Forgive me for the winded post, I know that most of you won't agree and that's perfectly fine. After all, YMMV.

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 01-20-2013, 12:14 PM
#2
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I have culled my brushes. I only use one or two of my straight razors (yes, I'm basically collecting the rest), but have way too many soaps.

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 01-20-2013, 12:31 PM
#3
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+1
(01-20-2013, 12:08 PM)VT_Hokie Wrote: You know what I mean, not dismissing all the knowledge and experience that you've gained over several years of participating in this community, but material wise.

Lately I find myself longing for things that I never wanted before. At the same time, I feel a bit overwhelmed by the immense collection that I already have at my fingertips.

It's as if I'm looking for more solace and simplicity in my life, Shave den included.

Instead of having 7 brushes, 5 razors, more blades, soaps, creams, aftershaves and miscellaneous shaving related apparel than you can shake a stick at. Wouldn't it be refreshing to just take a clean sweep of things and start over?

Keep what you love, lose what you don't.

By now I know what I want and need out of everything in my den. I feel that by possibly reducing the quantity and focusing on quality that I would be able to devote more time and attention to each item and really make the most out of what I have.

Sometimes I feel that in an age of overindulgence and reckless acquisition right at our fingertips, that sometimes we miss the point of what we set out to accomplish in the first place. It makes me feel silly quite honestly.

What would your Grandfather think of your shave den? I know it's a hobby and all, but I can't help to wonder at what point is it too much?

Forgive me for the winded post, I know that most of you won't agree and that's perfectly fine. After all, YMMV.

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 01-20-2013, 12:37 PM
#4
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I've been contemplating a cull for a while, just a few things have stopped me. Finding the time to photograph and sell what I think I want rid of. But mainly the thought that I'd regret moving certain things on, some of which I don't think I could easily replace if I changed my mind.

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 01-20-2013, 12:37 PM
#5
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My thoughts exactly which is why over the past few weeks I have been selling many items. I would prefer now to use a limited range more frequently and enjoy them for what they are. I am nearly done.

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 01-20-2013, 12:38 PM
#6
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Agree to a degree. It's the main reason I'm doing the shave sabbatical to enjoy what I have and slim down my collection.

As for what would my grandfather think....it's a different time and age and there is no way to compare recession times to now.

He would be happy i am Wet shaving and still using his minty Rocket Flare Tip though

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 01-20-2013, 12:47 PM
#7
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I'm at that point myself.

Razors: I've learned DEs aren't for me. I have the SEs I desire. Only a modern version of a Gem/EverReady would be a desire.

Brushes: Eliminated all my boars. Sold my scritchy badgers. Got my first custom & now only have desire for another custom.

Soaps: Martin de Candre has made me want to remove all others. Add in their yet to be released Fougére & I'll have all the variety I ever need.

AS: Krampert's Finest bay rum & menthol have eliminated all need/desire for anything else. Unless more scents come from Krampert's then I'm set with only the as needed replenishment.

Blades: Did you read that I use SEs exclusively? Not much to choose from anyway. Biggrin

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 01-20-2013, 01:20 PM
#8
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I'm at a similar point in my life. I've reconciled with myself that I have to much stuff and went overboard in the beginning. So I have self imposed a sabbatical of sorts and resolved to use up my stock and PIF a little. In the end I'll have a rotation of three soaps, a couple of AS's, one DE and 7 straights. I think it's a reasonable amount of hardware and I'll probably thin out my hones as well.

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 01-20-2013, 01:24 PM
#9
  • celar36
  • Enjoying Life 1 shave at time
  • London, UK
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(01-20-2013, 12:47 PM)SharpSpine Wrote: I'm at that point myself.

Razors: I've learned DEs aren't for me. I have the SEs I desire. Only a modern version of a Gem/EverReady would be a desire.

Blades: Did you read that I use SEs exclusively? Not much to choose from anyway. Biggrin

+1

Almost there. I love my DE's especially British made(Rockets, Aristocrat, etc..) Furthermore, I want to buy Feather razor. If the Feather, Gillette UK made with Meds Preps, Feather, Swedes dont much SE I will probably sell everything.

But hard part is getting rid off this beautiful stuffSad

Soaps: MWF, Dr. Harris To test: MdC, Tabac, GFT and Klar Kabinett

Brush: In love with Simpsons To Test buy one of Semogue, Omega and M%F

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 01-20-2013, 01:29 PM
#10
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(01-20-2013, 01:20 PM)CharlieFoxtrot Wrote: I'm at a similar point in my life. I've reconciled with myself that I have to much stuff and went overboard in the beginning. So I have self imposed a sabbatical of sorts and resolved to use up my stock and PIF a little. In the end I'll have a rotation of three soaps, a couple of AS's, one DE and 7 straights. I think it's a reasonable amount of hardware and I'll probably thin out my hones as well.

Oh jeez. Don't get me started on all those natural stones I've got lying around completely unused..... rolleyes:

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 01-20-2013, 02:02 PM
#11
  • Hanzo
  • Senior Member
  • Oakland, California
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Very interesting post and something we all think about as hobbyists.

If the hobby doesn't give enjoyment whats the point.One can have a lot of stuff or not, as long as one is happy with one's participation in the hobby. We can take what we want from the forums but programming that says you should do what others do all the time with what is your hobby should not be one of them.

Either we can achieve shaving heaven , fulfillment and satisfaction with our perfect permanent selection of shaving goods or make permanent buys/sells/trades, experiments and product trials a more fluid take on the hobby and you never rest with what you have but enjoyment is constant and changing . Just depends on what you want. This is always debated on all the forums, you'll have detractors or supporters of either way.

Our own principles and individuality should determnine our take on the hobby not the hobby determining them, are we controlled by our shaving mania or do we control it.


For me the point of the hobby is just fun, a laugh, to enjoy simple things ,the act of shaving and its material parts as well. A hobby is what we all need ,its purpose to pleasantly distract us from the problems of daily life. For me I am trying not to make it a source of anxiety, anger, massive seriousness, competition, envy, belonging, hard striving.

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 01-20-2013, 02:48 PM
#12
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I'm a year in and I was just thinking this to myself the other day. I literally thought I was done buying new stuff... Then I bought a jar of MdC, some more blades I haven't tried, heck today I just bout some of Mikes Natural shave soap. With Johnny's post about Panama 1924, I would love to try some I of that but do not I want to drop 50 plus shipping rights now for it.

I think I've come to the realization I'm a soap guy, and I have some soap I wouldn't want to be with out: Cella and MWF. I'm sure MdC will be a third one once it clears Customs and I try it.

I'm still on the fence with aftershaves. I can tell you I love how KFBR leaves my face, however I know for a fact I couldn't live with just that one scent. I do like Floid Blue, Speick, Clubman and Proraso. I wish I would've been around the nook when Below 80 was up for sale.

Brushes on the other hand... I've only tried boar. Of the 5 I own, the Semogue 830 is my favorite. Once my SOC is broken in, I can easily see that moving to the top. I do eventually want to try badger.

For razors I think I might be good. I have the EJ 89L that I almost use exclusively, but I do reach for my R41 every now and then. I would like to try a Weber as from what I've read it might be what I'm looking for. A bit more Aggressive then the EJ but not as much as the R41. I'm still on the fence with Straights.

After reading my post, I think I could get rid of the majority of my software and be happy.

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 01-20-2013, 03:19 PM
#13
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I understand completely. Although the old-school factor was a big reason I got into wet shaving, saving money was what pushed me over the edge to try it late last year. I have already accumulated a few things I realize I don't need (or will use) and I plan to get rid of them. As for the expense? I have a $40 Simpsons best badger brush collecting dust because I'm perfectly happy with my $7 Omega boar brush. I have a Merkur collecting dust because I'm more happy with my vintage Tech. I look at the nice, expensive soaps, aftershaves, etc. and realize I'm perfectly happy with my Proraso. I won't sacrifice just for the sake of saving a few bucks, but I will "bargain" shop as much as possible.

This can happen in any hobby and a fresh start always returns me back to the joy I felt back at the beginning. Not gonna let myself get to that point with the wet shaving...Undecided

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 01-20-2013, 03:35 PM
#14
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Well, no. So I'll be the dissenting voice I suppose. I've simplified my shave all I can already. Let me explain. My simplified shave cabinet still has quite a lot (IMO).

While I'm content where I am and I use most everything in my shave cabinet I've made the volume of the SC area (above the obama library chair) my upper limit on "stuff" to use (this doesn't pertain to items in storage, like soaps in bulk). If I want more to use I need to make room.

The brushes, razors, blades, soaps, everything in there is of value to me and I enjoy them and the variety they bring to the shave. I have more than some, not as much as many, the numbers aren't important. But I am content. I'm also in the process of trying to use up a few soaps so that I can (maybe) try others as they present themselves and more importantly grab my interest. Not many do. I'm content. If I bought nothing more I'd probably have enough for the rest of my life. But to pare down what I have... not really. It took me time to realize that I like what I have. I simply love the variety. OK, sure I could maybe get rid of the low performing razors (and for some I have), but it's those razors that give measure to the high performing ones. So how could I do that to all of them? I still use them from time to time to make me appreciate those razors that I really love.

That's why with my brushes I use every one of them in it's turn. Sometimes I leave the rotation, but I always return to it. The lesser brushes make me appreciate the really good ones. But even writing these words makes me uncomfortable since all my brushes are quite useable for me and each brings it's unique quality to the shave.

The same for the lesser soaps. They give measure to the really good ones, and I even like ARKO and Williams, again, they give measure to the better soaps. Though if all I had was ARKO I could use it and not feel deprived.

Aftershaves I won't even discuss in depth. If I want something I know what I want and then make it. Mostly in that area I'm happy (so far) with 2, but I've been thinking about a 3rd. I have some old ASs from the '70s that I'll probably PIF just to get them out of the cabinet.

OK, I could get rid of my old lather bowl, but it'd cost more to ship than it's worth. Maybe it would make a nice plant pot.

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 01-20-2013, 03:40 PM
#15
  • Arcadies
  • Senior Member
  • Greeneville, TN
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I'm actually reaching the end of my culling.

While my collection was modest compared to some out there, I had 36 brushes, 23 SE/DE razors (not counting duplicates/backups) over 56 soaps/creams and 22 aftershaves.

I am now down to 5 razors, 12 brushes, 20 or so soaps/creams and 10 or so A/S splashes/balms. I am still selling a couple of brushes but everything else I'm fairly happy with where I am at.

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 01-20-2013, 03:45 PM
#16
  • Manticore
  • Old And In The Way
  • Manchester, New Hampshire
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It's funny how our thoughts and approach to wetshaving changes over time and Matt I think I know exactly where you are coming from.

Shaving was always such a chore for me but I can't stand having a beard or moustache, so shaving it is. About 2 years ago I found the Leisure Guys book and my total approach to shaving changed. I actually started to enjoy shaving and as a bonus I started getting the best shaves of my life.

Over the next few months I gathered approximately 12 de razors, 6 brushes and a small assortment of creams and soaps. I don't consider that I went overboard. I was just finding what I like. I only bought 1 expensive piece and that is my Feather AS-D1, cost me $180.00. Money well spent.

Over 25 years ago I bought a de razor in a curio shop for a couple of bucks simply because it was the most beautiful razor I had ever seen and it was in outstanding condition. I tried using this razor when I bought it but there were no resources to learn how to use a de razor and my attempt did not go well, so it sat in a drawer in the bathroom. When I finally learned to use a de razor I found it to be a bit on the harsh side for me, it was a 1930 NEW President Short Comb. I had heard the Long Combs were a bit smoother for some guys so I surfed the bay till I found one in mint condition for under $20.00. I absolutely love my New Long Comb so I sold the 1930 NEW President and got a $350.00 return for a $2.00 investment 25 years ago. It was a beautiful razor but if I'm not going to use it I figured I'd sell it. The money from that razor covered the cost of my AS-D1 and a good portion of all the other shaving stuff I accumulated those first few months of wetshaving.

I haven't spent any money on shaving supplies for over a year now and I can probably go for another 5 years before I need to buy any cream or soap. I have enough blades to last the rest of my life so creams and soaps are the only supplies I'll have to ever buy in the future.

I've given about 3 razors, a couple of soaps and a brush to my son-in-law to get him started wetshaving and he loves it. He's my only convert so far but I still have about 9 razors so I'm equipped to get a couple more converts when the opportunity arises.

To me it's not really a hobby. It's definitely become a part of my personal grooming and turned what had been a chore into a pleasurable experience.

I know a lot of you fellas have some pretty elaborate collections and I love to look at the pics you post, but I'm glad I kept things on a small scale. I may be that rare wetshaver that didn't go through extreme AD's and I'm actually saving money by converting to wetshaving.

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 01-20-2013, 03:52 PM
#17
  • Songwind
  • Soap Slinger & Scuttle Pusher
  • Burnsville, MN
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I don't think about starting over very often, but I do think about giving away, throwing away, or selling a fair amount of my stuff.

I have soaps I rarely use, and others that I'm pretty sure I won't repurchase when they're gone. I have two aftershaves I almost never reach for. Unfortunately, in terms of selling, the stuff I don't really want to keep using is common and inexpensive. And something in me balks at just throwing it away. I have been considering a PIF.

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 01-20-2013, 03:57 PM
#18
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To use something from my gun world: A amateur has everything and a pro has exactly what he needs.

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 01-20-2013, 05:52 PM
#19
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(01-20-2013, 03:57 PM)CharlieFoxtrot Wrote: To use something from my gun world: A amateur has everything and a pro has exactly what he needs.

A fair enough analogy, but I think we're all technically amateurs here. Biggrin

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 01-21-2013, 03:00 PM
#20
  • matloffm
  • Senior Member
  • Culver City, CA
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I have been pruning gear and product I don't care for on a regular basis. My nook is too small to store a lot of unused stuff. Also, whatever I can get by selling the item helps toward the acquisition of new stuff. Biggrin

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