When you buy bespoke you're buying a relationship, not just a product

When it comes time to declare your personal manifesto to the world, nothing creates a more emotive statement than a bespoke luxury item.

Be it a sharply tailored suit or a custom-made automobile – each item is a celebration of the individual: their ambitions and values; their life and accomplishments.

Of course, the most desirable bespoke items are those made by hand, by a master craftsman who has spent their life in pursuit of the purity of their art.

"Bespoke goes beyond the 'product' level of simple ownership," said Michael Bryden, Lead Designer for Rolls-Royce Bespoke. "For our customers, it's a celebration of success; of a milestone or perhaps an anniversary. It can sometimes be perceived as trying to show off, but I don't think that's the case. It's about building a car that is an embodiment of that success; something that will last."

Manifesting dreams

In Melbourne recently to launch a new Rolls-Royce showroom, where customers can tailor a plethora of facets and features of their new vehicle, Mr Bryden has the enviable job of guiding Rolls-Royce customers through the Bespoke customisation program to help them create a vehicle that represents their style and personality, and occasionally an incarnation of their will.

Reclining in a limited edition 'Dawn – Inspired by Fashion', Rolls-Royce Drophead coupé, Bryden's appreciation for handmade artisanal products is writ large across his face.

"It's fantastic that people still appreciate craftsmanship," said Mr Bryden. "In some way it's a dying art to be a tailor, or, say, a craftsperson who specialises in wood veneer."

"Partly it's the story and the notion that somebody has spent a lot of time and employed a lot of skill to create an item. It's also the notion that something that's handmade will have a greater longevity – you could hand it down through generations, you know."

Not-so-obvious details

Building a Bespoke vehicle at Rolls-Royce, where every car is assembled by hand at the company's Goodwood assembly facility, England, in a lengthy process that can take months, offers a rare opportunity for the owner to tell a very personal story; one uniquely their own.

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"A Bespoke car can be very subtle – it's not always bright orange," said Mr Bryden. "What it offers is a level of discovery that you can't always see instantly. Like on the Zenith, we hide a few things away, so that when you open it you discover something new. It's about creating a little bit of surprise and delight."

Intimate relationships

Much like a relationship that grows between friends, every time you experience a Bespoke Rolls-Royce you come away with a deeper level of intimacy. This affinity ultimately grows as the vehicle becomes an expression of your personality and values.

"You wouldn't necessarily want to take the same car as the other guy," said Mr Bryden. That's one of the things that sets Rolls-Royce apart - it's certainly not mass luxury. It's beyond that. It's tailoring; it's creating a unique product."

While there may only be a select few who can afford the luxury of a Bespoke Rolls-Royce, for the rest of us, there is still a world of bespoke personal items that can turn a normally common item into a unique personal statement.

If it's time for you to make the ultimate personal statement, browse the gallery above and enjoy some of the world's most exquisite bespoke and handmade goods.

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