The whole world...
Handcrafting & hand painting terrestrial & celestial globes the traditional way. The inspiration for what was a massive career change came after a lifetime of buying my father standard gifts like books, socks and ties. I wanted to buy a quality globe & all i found were poor quality imitations, plastic school type globes or fragile & very expensive antiques.
While searching for this globe for my father... everything modern I found was so badly made.. with cheap stands and incorrect cartography. It really inspired me to want to create world globes that would be up to date, personalised to suit any taste, tailored around a customers preferences, aesthetically beautiful....and of course functional. Our globes are made to be touched and spun... and what I really love is that each one is essentially one of a kind.
What’s the first step to making a globe? First... you need to create a perfect sphere, using two half-moulds.
Next, we edit our map. Since each globe is made to order we are updating our cartography constantly.. and personalise depending on our customers preferences.
Once the map is ready, it is printed and cut up hand into precise shapes called gores. The gores are painted by hand using watercolours, which give a unique result for each globe.
When the gores are dry, they are ready to be attached to the globe, which is called ‘goring the globe’. That stage is very precise work and very difficult because you are wetting the delicate paper and stretching it. Wet paper as you can imagine is very fragile. The paper wants to rip, ripple, bubble or tear naturally. If you work with one piece too long it will naturally degrade
After the gores are applied many more layers and detail of watercolour are added and the globe is sealed with either a gloss or matte finish.
The globe is then placed into it’s base. We make a variety of traditional and modern bases of our own design. The base must be made and hand finished, placed together with the engraving.
The Albion Desktop Globes spin 360 degrees in a fluid motion by hand
The more traditional globes spin within a brass meridian -
Once we are happy with the final outcome... and have thoroughly checked the globe over... it is packaged carefully in either a bespoke “flight case” or a special made crate... and shipped off to its new home. We ship worldwide.
My favourite part... putting on the last gore. It is an immense feeling of pride ... and you can stand back and admire what has taken so long to complete
Who does it take to be a Globemaker? Patience is the most important thing, and being a true “maker” - meaning being able to & loving to work with your hands.
With each globe made bespoke to order... options of customisation are endless. Anything a customer would like can be added. Illustrations... bespoke cartography... we can map your travels... add poems in calligraphy in the sea.. do bespoke colouring... anything you can imagine in your mind we will do our best to create. We do custom bases & hand engraved messages. Customers often ask for a tiny illustrations to represent every place they have travelled. We have traced journeys around the world... and even created a globe in the shape of an egg.
Our largest globe is the 127cm diameter Churchill. It takes at least 6 months to make from the time we start the cartography work to the time we deliver. Only 40 of these globes will ever be made.