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Orders & Prices

Guide Prices for 2024

  • 6 courses from £5000
  • 7-9 courses from £5600
  • 10 courses from £6000
  • 11 courses from £6500
  • 13 courses from £7000
  • Archlute from £7500
  • Chitarronni from £8500

The above, represents prices for the simplest models. The final price is agreed at the point at which I start work but an approximate price can be given during initial conversations.

Commissioning

I rarely build two instruments that are exactly the same. To some degree or other, most customers have particular requirements that they want to me to accommodate. There are pros and cons to this high degree of personalisation though. On the plus side, I am able to build lutes that respond to an individual’s needs, but relative to the idea of repeating standard forms of lute, this type of approach is slower and more expensive – that’s the down side.

The construction of each instrument follows detailed discussions with the client to establish which is the most appropriate model, string length, what materials to use, string spacings etc. The agreed specification forms the basis on which the work will eventually proceed.

Customers may contact me by telephone, email, or by appointment – video conference (FaceTime, Zoom) or in person at the workshop.

Current Waiting List

The waiting list is closed until further notice. This is intended to be a temporary measure and I hope to re-open it in late 2025. I am always happy to discuss potential new work but with this in mind.

For a variety of reasons, I was not able to work during of parts 2022 and much of 2023. I resumed full-time lute making six months ago (September ’23), and my main focus now is to concentrate on honouring all existing orders.

A Lutemaker’s Life

Like most contemporary lute makers I work completely on my own. Each instrument is the result of many hours of patient, skilled work. Even relatively simple lutes take a minimum of 200 hours to construct, and by the time they are varnished, set up and ready to play, that figure increases.  For more complicated instruments that figure can easily double. Typically, the process from start to finish is spread over a period of months not weeks, and that requires commitment, stamina, focus and energy. I don’t keep a strict count of the hours – I concentrate on what needs to be done in order to build a lute to the standard that I expect of myself, and which I know will please the customer. If this means spending more time, then so be it. I aim to work as efficiently as possible, but even so, making good lutes takes time.

Whilst occupied on a commission I also have to allow for a myriad of other tasks that are part of a lute makers day to day life – answering emails, ordering materials, buying wood, making varnish, working on new designs, occasional repairs, making new moulds, planning, tool making etc. Although necessary, many of these tasks are also rewarding and great fun to do, but they all take time and energy. Wood is a wonderful material to work with but it can be capricious and unpredictable, especially when the relative humidity changes, and controlling variable factors throughout the building process requires constant alertness. There’s never a never a dull moment and for all of the above, and other random life events it is difficult to work to a timetable and I ask for understanding that I always try to do my best.

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