Best Made Company: New York goes back to the wilderness

The New York scene already has its fair share of bushy beards and lumberjack shirts, but the Best Made Company offers a full range of other accessories for those who wish to escape from civilization...

Peter Buchanan-Smith was a successful graphic designer when, in 2009, he had his biggest hit with a handmade axe that sported a colourful lacquered barrel. Soon it was sought after by Hollywood names such as David Lynch and exhibited at London's Saatchi Gallery. Having grown up on a farm in Ontario, Buchanan-Smith had spent much time in the wilderness of northern Canada and knew the necessity of a good axe out there. For the urban vanguard that soon flocked to his New York shop, the handmade and limited axes were primarily a symbol of the return to nature, of adventure, and of the simple work of their great-grandfathers' generation. For Father's Day 2010, Best Made Company sold more than 100 axes, at around 180 U.S. dollars apiece.

From web designs to campfires

Today you can buy a complete range of retro camping equipment at Best Made: pocket knives from France and Japan, German saws and English scissors, enamelled plates and coffee mugs, gnarled backpacks, blankets, compasses, first aid kits, 1970s U.S. Army survival guides and even a complete set of nautical flags. And so it attracts the young advertisers and web designers who want to take a break from their MacBooks for a week or so, and escape from the forests of New York to forests of an entirely different kind.

The Best Made store is at 36 White Street in New York City. More information can be found at