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Ridding Your Home Of Boring Walls: Below The Boat

We at of Iron & Oak strive to provide you guys, our faithful readers, with a wealth of different information to potentially enhance your overall gentlemanly appearance. One such aspect of this is the general outward impression that the walls in your home give off. Yes. Interior design. You want them to say something about you and your personality without giving off the notion that you’re simply an Xbox obsessed frat boy who drinks cheap beer and may still live with their mom.

That said, your days of simply thumb tacking Star Wars posters to your bedroom walls and calling them art are over. Whereas those movies were surely entertaining, you’re a classy, more sophisticated individual now and the artwork on your walls should reflect that. At the very least, buy a frame, man.

However, while scouring the internet for intriguing artwork for you guys, in an effort to possibly broaden your proverbial horizons, we’ve come across a small company from Bellingham, Washington called Below The Boat. And, because it’s nautical, we’re obsessed.

BelowTheBoatSalishBelow The Boat is a company run by a husband and wife team, Robbie and Kara Johnson, who sell nautical themed wood charts. However, they aren’t just any wood charts, they’re bathymetric charts, the underwater version of topographic maps. These charts create sumptuous 3D wooden visuals of the Earth’s deep sea mountain ranges, cliffs and valleys.

The contours of each sheet of Baltic birch wood are laser-cut and glued together to create what Below The Boat’s website is calling a “powerful visual depth.” Certain layers are then hand-colored blue to differentiate the land from the water while major byways are etched into the land. The entire chart is then framed in a custom, solid-wood frame and protected with a sheet of plexiglas.

The best part about these charts are their ability to appeal to multiple regions across North America. Although we, personally, are still waiting for the Jersey Coastline or Manhattan charts to surface on their site, Below The Boat has artistically brought the Pacific Northwest’s volcanic coastline to life as well as the Southwest, Southeast, lakes all across North America and the “history-rich coastline of the Atlantic.” If they don’t have a specific location you’re looking for, you can let them know and they’ll consider it for future charts.

The charts themselves are designed professionally by a separate husband and wife team based out of Michigan and are then assembled by a small, family-owned shop overseas.

Yes. These charts are a bit pricey. However, they have the ability to become much more than just a piece of artwork on your wall. These are conversational pieces to show off to guests. Hell, maybe your town or favorite beach location is featured on the chart itself, allowing you to tell great stories, especially if you’re the nautical type.

If these charts are out of your price range or just don’t speak to you, don’t fret. This is simply an idea to churn your brains. A while back, we even posted an entry about metallic wall art, which may appeal more to your general sophisticated style. The point is, thumb tacked Star Wars posters aren’t cutting it anymore, fellas. Girls may think you’re creepy.


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