Q: How long should I expect my reeds to last? How can I make them last longer?

That really depends how much you play them, and it can be vary widely. To maximize your reed life expectancy try these things:

  • Always soak them in warm water before playing, never just soak them in your mouth.
  • Over soaking before playing can cause warping, don't leave them unattended in water.
  • Rinse them off after playing before putting them away.
  • Between practise sessions store them in a ventilated case with good air circulation, at a medium level of humidity. Let them dry out somewhat to prevent bacteria growth but extreme dryness can cause warping.

Q: Do your reeds have a top and bottom blade?

Yes they do!

English horn reeds should always be played with the wire on the top.

Oboe reeds can be played either way around, but I test mine with the thread crossover on the bottom.

Q: The wire on my English horn reed was loose when it arrived. Is this a problem?

I adjust the wire when I do my final play test. If the reed dries out while it's being shipped, the wire may become loose.

  • Soak the reed as though you were going to play it.
  • Push the wire back into position so that it stays put.

The ideal tightness for the wire is usually just enough so that it stays in position. If your English horn reed becomes sharp as it ages you can often counteract this by moving the wire closer to the thread or removing it entirely.

Q: Do you do custom orders?

Yes! Contact me.

Q: Do you also make oboe d'amore reeds?

I do, but I don't make as many d'amore reeds as oboe or English horn reeds so please contact me for availability. Oboes d'amore are also less standardized than the other instruments, so I might want to customize them to suit your particular instrument.