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Martin's limited-run Bentley Snowflake First Edition Custom Guitar is inspired by the first pictures of snow crystals

Martin Bentley Snowflake First Edition
(Image credit: Martin Guitars)

Martin has announced a new limited-run acoustic guitar, the Bentley Snowflake First Edition Custom, which features inlays of snowflakes photographed by Wilson A. Bentley.

Bentley’s images of snow crystals were first captured in 1885, using a technique known as photomicrography, and his observation that “no two snowflakes are alike” has long since entered popular usage.

Martin says it has worked with the Jericho Historical Society, custodians of Bentley’s archives, in order to secure the rights to use his snowflake images in a limited range of instruments, replacing their own snowflake inlay designs.

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Martin Bentley Snowflake First Edition

(Image credit: Martin Guitars)
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Martin Bentley Snowflake First Edition

(Image credit: Martin Guitars)
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Martin Bentley Snowflake First Edition

(Image credit: Martin Guitars)
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Martin Bentley Snowflake First Edition

(Image credit: Martin Guitars)

Clearly aimed at wealthier collectors, the resulting guitar, the 2022 Bentley Snowflake First Edition, features Bentley’s snowflake patterns on not just the fretboard inlays, but also the bridge, scratchplate and heel of the instrument.

The model is based on the firm's classic 14-fret dreadnought shape and built from premium tone woods, including Madagascar rosewood (on the back and sides), a Sitka spruce top, plus an ebony bridge and fingerboard.

Each instrument will also come with a “crystal glass snowflake presentation piece”, once registered by the owner and the design will only exist for this run, before being retired.

However, Martin says it is not the only Bentley Snowflake edition they hope to create, revealing that the scope of their agreement with Bentley's archive allows them to periodically create a fresh inlay design in future limited runs.

The Bentley Snowflake First Edition has an MSRP of $15,499 – head to Martin’s official site for more information.

Matt Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.