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First of all thank you very much for the reply to my question on the Sowden Pickles violin case.

A couple of days later I spoke to Mr Sowden

to arrange to see the case for myself.

What I found on the day was something I have

never seen before - a workshop full of intruiging things! All the family made me welcome and Mr Sowden introduced me to the processes involved in manufacturing violin bow hair, including the sorting, picking and drawing processes. He also showed me lots of different types of bow hair, and other uses for horse hair including judges wigs and sporrens. I had a look around Mr Pickles workshop where they make the cases and got the full history of how they designed and began making the cases.

I ended up buying a both a viloin and a bow case which holds 6 bows. I am so pleased with them.

I would recommend a visit to anyone!

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I just looked up "sporren" (sporran) in the dictionary and learned that it is the little fur pouch that hangs down in Scottish dress.

Always wondered what that little bugger was!

Anyway, I'm very surprised to learn that sporrans are made of horsehair--always guessed before that it was something like the beard of a goat.

Life is often so very interesting, isn't it?


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I must say that I had a great overseas transaction with Sowden's. The products arrived faster than some that I purchased in the US. I am still amazed at the restoration product that I purchased and have passed on the information to several of my luthier friends. Mr. Sowden is 100% professional. I wish that I could visit the shop.

george behary

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