Choosing Your Own Adventure With Best Made.


Peter Buchanan-Smith, the founder of Best Made Co. describes the brand as, “a window into the wilderness.” To Buchanan-Smith and COO Ben Lavely, the axes, first aid kits, prints, jackets, and countless other items that make up the BMC collection are meant to transport the customer from their office or apartment into the great outdoors, if only for a moment.

This notion of carrying shoppers away into the wilderness is what defines the brand’s White Street flagship. As one of downtown New York’s wealthiest neighborhoods TriBeCa is hardly the first place you’d assume a utilitarian outdoor brand would set up shop, but for Best Made, the location fulfills their ultimate goal. Once inside the shop, which opened just about a year ago, the urbanscape that lies on the other side of the door seems to slip away, and you’re transported, at least mentally, into the wild.


Practicality prevails at Best Made and everything, including the posters, guidebooks, and even the clothes are described as “tools.” Whether they’re meant to make your life easier, educate you on the outdoors, or protect you from the elements, each piece that’s on display at Best Made has been either crafted or selected with function in mind. The space even functions as a workshop where educators teach courses on everything from cast-iron cooking to treating wounds in the field. The lines between art and instrument are blurred constantly as you walk the floor, as each resting product looks like it could be a sculpture, until you pick it up and realize that’s it a multi-function tool that’s been meticulously designed for an outdoor excursion.

On the steel board by the door hangs a series of maps and images that embody the brand’s aesthetic, alongside a small collection of thank you notes that BMC has collected over the years. Ben points to one in particular, a handwritten letter by the staff of True Value hardware store praising BMC for their dedication to high-quality products with a real purpose. What that purpose is different to each person, but that’s the secret behind BMC’s success. Best Made is quite literally just giving their customers the tools to guide their own adventures.










Comments on “Choosing Your Own Adventure With Best Made.

    Garyon July 4, 2014 @ 1:21 PM:

    This store is like being inside Wes Anderson’s head. Lots of great stuff, but about four or five times the price it should be.

    scalewormon July 4, 2014 @ 3:46 PM:

    I love this:

    “This store is like being inside Wes Anderson’s head”

    Wes Anderson is a God among film makers.

    I love the products of this store, but being a by necessity frugal (educator) realist, love it from afar.

    Great products though.

    Ray Hullon July 4, 2014 @ 3:57 PM:

    I don’t get it.

    Aardvark Adventureon July 4, 2014 @ 6:02 PM:

    I don’t get it, either.

    It looks like a well-decorated store that only sells the store’s decorations.

    Patrickon July 4, 2014 @ 11:13 PM:

    Wes Anderson? Irony pervades all of Mr Anderson’s work, as it does a number of these objects. No thanks.

    Coreyon July 5, 2014 @ 3:39 PM:

    The items look great but some (namely the painted designer axes) are very pretentious. I actually camp and use many of these items but I bought mine from military surplus and I would never pay the amounts to buy many of the products that this store sells simply on the basis of utilitarianism and common sense justification. Is the excuse for these items being overpriced because they are made in America? This may sound overly critical but it is like selling the U.S. government $15 hammers at a inflated price of $300 a piece. I think many of the items can be had much cheaper for the same quality.

    Georgieon July 5, 2014 @ 4:40 PM:

    For anyone that’s every gone camping, let alone BACK COUNTRY camping, the thought of bringing a $50 leather-wrapped pen to write in your $109 leather-bound journal about how you carried around your $350 axe and slept on your $400 canvas tent, which you erected using an artisanal $80 hammer to nail in the stakes is almost as ridiculous as spending $800 on a “camping” jacket that’s going to get dirty and ripped within the first hour of your trip.

    Seriously, this is all form over function; “gear” for poseurs that don’t spend time in the wilderness, but want to impress their friends at cocktail parties. And that’s fine and all, but not when it comes to survival gear.

    berton July 6, 2014 @ 1:06 PM:

    I like to look at the stuff but I doubt I would buy any of it. I do like the cool old time looking extension cords.

    R. Biggson July 7, 2014 @ 11:12 AM:

    I find this brand and thier “Andy Warhol in the Wilderness” aesthetic to be completely revolting. Top quality axes that will never split wood. Overpriced “unfinished”, then the price is doubled with silly candy striping. Barf.

    I hate the comparison one commentor made to Wes Anderson. Wes Anderson’s hyper-stylized aesthetic serves his storytelling, and characters actual use those carefully chosen props. Best Made’s products are used by no one; they are purchased by spoiled wealthy idiots who’s lives are filled with so much superflous nonsense that they find the idea of actual utility quaint.

    Brandonon July 7, 2014 @ 12:34 PM:

    I get it. And I want it.

    Bernieon July 7, 2014 @ 2:09 PM:

    What Georgie said- I suspect you might get your ass kicked bringing this stuff in to the back country.

    Clinton July 9, 2014 @ 11:43 AM:

    I admit that I’m attracted to Best Made’s style, but there is also something ridiculous about it. I think this Re-Made spoof sums it up best

    Jackon July 9, 2014 @ 2:36 PM:

    I don’t get it.

    So you know what, because I don’t understand the higher art, design, and exercise in lifestyle Best Made creates, I’m going to hate it, trash it, and say it doesn’t make sense. You see to me, everything is black and white, and this is an overpriced supply store! I’m going to detail every item and its price, and then tell you that you’ll get your ass kicked in the back country. What an overpriced supply store. How dare they. And because I probably can’t afford to supply myself with the supplies in this supply store, since I still think it’s meant to only be a supply store, I’m going to judge that wealthy idiot poseurs looking to show off at cocktail parties only shop here. Because I’m comparing Best Made, a store with no equal located in Tribeca, to a thrift, military supply, or outdoor chain.

    U mad bro?

    thison July 10, 2014 @ 10:06 AM:

    U defensive bro? Or is it bruh? Or brah? I have such a problem with pronouns.

    Miss rush week?

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