Monday, January 13, 2014

West meets East

Allan Holmberg and Sakai Japanese Knives

Trying to work between two different cultures is not always easy. Traditional knife making has deep roots, both in the Nordic and Japanese cultures. The Nordic culture has concentrated on handles and materials accompanied with a basic blade shape. The Japanese traditional craftsman has focused on the edge. It seems only logical to try to bring them closer together in an exchange of philosophy and technique. 

This is easier said than done. First you have to find intuitively curious individuals that are for lack of a better word, courageous. Individuals with an involvement and love for their craft that has led to an insatiable curiosity.

As I find time will share my experiences with developing this project.

This is the first result of an unusual marriage between West and East traditional knife making. 

The blade is unique and there is only one in the world crafted by Japanese Masters. It is Kasumi blade, hand forged of Japanese blue steel. It is a traditional single bevel blade. The single bevel offers a superior cutting edge and diversity of sharpening. 

Our partner here in the Nordic region is proud of his status as, Hovleverant√∂r, (purveyor to his majesty the king of Sweden). He has made thousands of Knives in his life time and his work shop is littered with bags of finished projects. He simply enjoys the discovery of form. He does little or no machine work, forming each pice by hand. The joy comes from finding pattern in each material and he works with many. The first project was a knife for himself that he intended to use and had used often. 

One of the greatest assets of a traditional Japanese knife is the "Single Bevel" design. In conjunction with it's hollowed back it offers a variety of sharpening configurations. Making it one of the most versatile outdoor/hunting knives.

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