Pocket Guide: George Bamford

Originally featured in Issue 52 of The Rake, George Bamford, the creator of Bamford Watch Department and the son of JCB chairman Lord Bamford, turns luxury timepieces into customised works of art.
Pocket Guide: George Bamford
George Bamford is not exactly old; far from it. His business savvy, however, belies a childlike enthusiasm for the world’s opportunities and offerings. I don’t mean this in a bad way — quite the opposite, in fact. He is a thinker, he has imagination, he finds alternative routes that no one else thinks of and all of which are a product of a welcome sense of fun, adventure and joie de vivre that you see in people like Lorenzo Cifonelli, who is changing the way tailoring is made available to the wider market, and would have seen in Ettore Bugatti, when cars as a mode of transport just wasn’t enough. Bamford’s method isn’t based on proving anyone wrong or debunking the status quo, it’s about squeezing every ounce of joy from everything he comes across, and repackaging it into something fun and ambitious. The Rake had the rare opportunity to get further insight into his visionary practices, and came to see that art, colour, family and a few Labradors are at the centre of his oeuvre. Bamford’s personal style cannot be pigeonholed; rather, whether it is suits, shoes, belt buckles or ties, he is on a search for more. Which, in the world of The Rake, is something we salute. Originally published in Issue 52 of The Rake. Subscribe here for more.
This suit and tie combination gleefully links heritage and modernity. The suit is a chalkstripe navy suit from legendary Italian tailor Caraceni, demonstrating exquisite taste when looking beyond Savile Row. The tie is a well paired Uniform Experiment in collaboration with Fragment Design's Hiroshi Fujiwara.
This necklace has miscellaneous gewgaws attached, all containing sentimental value, including his children's fingerprints, Japanese coins, his wedding ring, and some crucifixes. As George puts it,
When people have their timepieces customised, they receive a Bamford Mayfair watch to temporarily replace it.
It's the personal touches that tell you the most about why someone dresses in a certain way. Some people spend vast amounts of money on expensive bracelets, but George keeps things personal and touching, as these were all made by family and friends over the years.
Small details are everything in a wardrobe. The Milanese buttonhole is a perfect example of craftsmanship and subtlety.
These Chelsea boots are a bespoke pair from an independent shoemaker called Eric Cook, who is hard to find these days as he begins to retire, but some consider him to be the finest maker of shoes in the world. George's shoe collection means that this pair is just one of many, but George is acutely aware how special this particular pair is.
A choice of watches from George's personal collection: an Omega Speedmaster, a Tag Heuer Calculator, and a Tag Heuer Monza.
George's impressive shoe collection, including vintage sneakers and sports shoes.
Leather belts in black, brown, blue and tan are embellished with studs, buckles, colourful linings and contrast stitching.
George's Labradors are arguably two of his finest accessories.
The glasses are a collaboration between Bamford and ic! Berlin. Minimalist chic materials and modern lines create a powerful impact around the eyes.