July 2013 I was invited to stop by the Best Made Co. party to visit friend and undergraduate professor Peter Buchannan-Smith: A great person and an even greater designer. Arriving late, I found myself enclosed by camping gear of all shapes & sizes in the midst of the most amazing city in the world! I was greeted with loud music coming from wooden car speakers and the smell of roasting pig mixed with beer…


As I made my way into the party, I found myself passing a row of vibrantly colored axe handles that Peter painted. As I stepped through a large hanging curtain I caught another strong whiff of fresh barbeque sauce and a packed house of inhabitants. I was impressed with how cozy a space Peter and the Best Made Co. found for themselves. I had the feeling I was more in the Black Bear Lodge a place we would drink at after portfolio class some years back. It was rustic, yet very modern. There was a loft or tree fort of sorts that was suspended over our heads. Over a sea of noggins I saw Peter, shook hands and snapped a mug shot for good time sake. Peter asked me to grab a “burger & beer”! The burgers were spread out on a cozy retro style picnic table like the ones you would see in a public park. All along I was thinking; I’m ninety percent vegan and I haven’t touch a drop of booze for some time now so am I really any “fun” anymore? But my party mode kicked in and the experience I had that night was motivational on many levels.


I also think having a camping store in downtown Manhattan is in itself a wonderful concept. That night, I felt an intimate feeling of not just being at the opening launch of the Best Made Co. party for my friend but at a bivouac in the seed of the big apple listening to Country Joe & the Fish. Good times — Craig


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