Whipping up success

David Bishop’s business, Warwick Whips, has cracked the international market.
David Bishop’s business, Warwick Whips, has cracked the international market. Georja Ryan

WHAT began as a curious line of questioning, has whipped its way into the international business world.

David Bishop started his business, Warwick Whips, in November of 2010 after meeting Chic Roche and Garry Glasby at an event in Yangan.

The trio got talking and soon enough Mr Bishop was learning the secrets to leather-plaiting and whip making.

Warwick Whips is now a company sought after by stockmen across the globe, with the demand for Mr Bishop's quality products.

"We make good quality working whips, none of the dodgy stuff," Mr Bishop said.

Mr Bishop prides his business on not only the quality, but the reasonable price of his stock which also includes belts and newly-introduced guitar straps.

But it's not just the cowboys of Warwick who are reaping the benefits of Mr Bishop's work.

"At the end of last year it went international for the first time where I sent a whip over to Canada to a guy who had bought one here at the Rodeo markets and took that back with him and wanted another one," he said.

"We've also sent whips to one of the largest ranches in America and this year we sent to the United Kingdom.

"We're finding that people are coming to us now," Mr Bishop said.

All the products used to make the whips come from local businesses, Toowoomba or Brisbane.

The intricate detail to some of the stock whips produced a hint they would take weeks to create, but Mr Bishop said some can be completed in a day.

"Getting to know the types of plaits and how to cut a whip out takes time, and there is still a lot for me to learn but I think I produce pretty good stuff," Mr Bishop said.

He said those wanting to get into whip making needed to be prepared to lose some blood.

"You will lose a lot of blood doing this and you'll get sliced thumbs and all the rest but it's great."

One style of belt he makes, the hobble belt, can also be turned into horse hobbles to make them possibly one of the most convenient belts a stockman could own.

"They've got rings on them so a lot of contract stockmen can whip them off and use them as hobbles so they can sit down and have lunch and their horse doesn't run away," he said.


Want to learn?

David Bishop is holding a workshop for those eager to learn the art of whip-making.

  • Who: Bill Glasgow and George Yorksten from Toowoomba will take the workshop and David Bishop will be there to assist.
  • Where: Pringle Cottage, 79-83 Dragon St, Warwick.
  • Time: 9-9.30am.
  • What: By the end of the day you will go home with your very own whip, plaited by you. Morning tea and lunch included.
  • Cost: $88
  • How: Contact David Bishop on 0408 201 820

Topics:  business cowboys stockmen

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