The Story of The Pipkin's Brush
In the years 1870 - 1892 The City of London Brushmakers, like many other brushmakers in England,
would outsourse the making of their brushes by employing 'home workers' or 'outworkers' as they were called.
These 'home workers' would collect the various items needed to make brushes from our brushmaking
company and take them home. They would then labouriously make each brush by hand and be paid on
a piece-work basis ie. per each item made.
One of the most famous of these 'home workers' was a woman named Mary Pipkin. She and her sisters,
Millicent and Margeret, were well known for the fine quality of their work and were frequently
used by our company at that time.
Mary, along with her common-law husband, Mr Josiah Potts started their own tiny business called
Pipkins victorian Brushworks. They were based in lodgings on the High Road in Tottenham. They
continued to supply our company, as well as a few top end stores with handmade shaving brushes.
Mr Potts was a master engraver. While Mary and her sisters made the brushes, Mr Potts would lathe, turn by hand, polish and engrave the shaving brush handles made of bone with the most elaborate detail work, even in victorian standards when most items were extremely ornate.
We have recently found in our stores two of the original brushes made by The Pipkins Victorian Brushworks
and have decided to replicate them, making brushes that look the way they did more than 100 years
ago. Most of the brushes made had different names on them for the different models ie Albert ,Oscar, Dickens, Gladstone etc to name but a few. These will be made of resin rather than the bone used in those years.
After much effort we have proundly made a limited range of replicated 'Pipkins Brushes' as a tribute
to The Pipkins Victorian Brushmakers.
Each of these limited edition brushes are beautifully engraved in the same style as the originals
and filled with the traditional waxes. The ebony (not wood, resin) brushes are filled with Italian
The front of the brush is engraved with the Pipkins stamp. Above this is the coat of arms for
Oueen Victoria. The brush model name is engraved on the front of the brush, with the name Victorian
Brush Works - Limited Edition listed below.
On the reverse side of the brush is an engraved portrait of Queen Victoria and the words
'Finest Silvertip Badger Hair - Handmade'
Each brush handle is made in and imported from England.
As soon as we have the complete range of replicas ready we will post it on this site. They will be sold on a first come, first served basis as the exercise has taken a long time to complete.
I must mention well worth the time taken when holding the finished article.