"After all how difficult can it be to make a ball and put a map on it?"
December 23, 2014 11:49 PM   Subscribe

Looking for a job change in 2015? Have you considered apprenticing as a globemaker?

Bellerby & Co. are a maker of globes based in London. As their founder states:

So the original plan, hatched in a pub in Kings Cross was to make just two, one for Dad, one for me. It would probably take three, maybe four months and cost a few thousand pounds. After all how difficult can it be to make a ball and put a map on it?

Turns out rather more difficult than you would think, but also rather lucrative, with their range sold out for Christmas. Never fear, you can always order for the new year, whether it is a mini desk globe (political or celestial!) or the giant limited edition Churchill, or something in between.

Of course if you have your heart set on being a globe maker yet miss out on the opportunity at Bellerby & Co. you could always ask Greaves and Thomas or Lander & May if they have any upcoming positions.

Maybe you could just watch videos of globemaking - Peter Bellerby again - or just have a go at making your own.
posted by Megami (9 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
Another of those things that we just take for granted, without realising how much work goes into a quality product. Very impressive.
posted by dg at 12:03 AM on December 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Given the price, I assume that the large globe is strictly for would-be supervillains. And since it's made of oak, the effect of shooting a sufficiently powerful laser at a targeted spot would have precisely the intended effect.
posted by clawsoon at 1:44 AM on December 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

These are not things anyone takes for granted, I think. The small desk globes are a thousand pounds a pop, these are not exactly cheap plastic globes. Very nice looking, though, but essentially a high-end luxury product.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 1:44 AM on December 24, 2014

I was in Phil Knight's office, briefly. Biggest globe I've ever seen. Looking back I'd say diameter was 5-6'. It was really, really awesome just to look at for about 5 seconds. It kind of stopped me as I'd only seen cheap 12" or so desk ones, or even cheaper, plastic, larger ones in school.
posted by efalk at 2:12 AM on December 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Fascinating, thank you.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 2:17 AM on December 24, 2014

I never knew, before today, how much I needed a 5ft tall wooden globe. I bet it's heavy enough to kill someone in a bizarre end-of-the-movie fight.
posted by blue_beetle at 5:33 AM on December 24, 2014 [6 favorites]

I worked for that guy briefly when he was the boss of Bloomsbury Bowling lanes. He struck me as a mildly dodgy, hyperactive businessman, the kind to open an entertainment venue in the West End. I wouldn't even have bet at a million-to-one he'd then go into obscure fine craftsmanship. People become so interesting if you give them the benefit of the doubt.
posted by Spanner Nic at 7:45 AM on December 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

This is a handicraft I can imagine myself taking up, but the level of quality here is astounding. Maps, globes, and cartography are one of my minor obsessions.
posted by chimaera at 9:42 AM on December 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Those globes are all so gorgeous. And I cannot believe that one of the 'extremely heavy' desk globes hasn't been used as a plot point in a Midsomer Murders episode. What are the writers doing?
posted by lesbiassparrow at 6:15 PM on December 24, 2014

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