O’Brien’s Shillelagh – 7/8 Forge Finish, Blackthorn Wood, Fine Silver
A blade with strength, thoughtfulness, heritage, and humility. This razor was commissioned by a man proud of his family history, the O’Brien family of Ireland. Irish blackthorn wood was requested, as was an engraving of the family crest (three lions), along with his daughter’s name in Ogham, the Irish language prevalent from the 4th to 6th centuries AD. As a craftsman, I was challenged by the project in a few ways. One, obtaining blackthorn wood was very difficult, especially in a size and shape suitable for straight razor. Also, how do I make the blackthorn wood look unique? Not just any wood?I could force the material into nice, tidy scales, thin, and blonde. But this doesn’t do any justice to what the notion of blackthorn wood is.
So, I purchased a genuine Shillelagh from Ireland, essentially a walking stick that doubles as a nice club/weapon, and made scales from this. While selecting a portion of the Shillelagh, I focused on the function of the straight razor, while highlighting the knots.