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Looking for traditional Japanese knife-makers (in Japan)

japana

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Hi Everyone!

I have a quite unique question here related to Japanese knifes (daily use ones guyto, deba, sujihiki etc., not swords).
Some time ago I fell in love with Japanese art of making and now me and my two friends Ann and Isabella are trying to showcase and promote talented Japanese craftsmen on our website. Do you know any talented knife makers?
I'd be very very happy if you or anyone you know speaking English and obviously Japanese, was interested in representing us in Japan. My friends and I are going there the end of October (can't wait!) to personally meet the craftsmen, but I would really appreciate if you know anyone who would be interested in collaborating.
Thanks and have a lovely day!

Best,
Kamila
 
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Cannot help you with people, but I know that a city directly south of Osaka, called Sakai, is famous for its knife industry. Maybe it will help you in the right direction.
 

nice gaijin

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When I was cycling around Shikoku I came across the Seaside Gallery at Irino beach in Kochi. They had a bunch of interesting stuff for sale, including some handmade kitchen knives, one of which I bought for myself (I don't see the knives in their online store).

You'd need to use Japanese most likely, but you can try reaching out to them ENGLISH | 砂浜美術館
 

Lothor

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Seki City in Gifu Prefecture is also well-known like Solingen in Germany.

Seki, Gifu - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
岐阜県関刃物産業連合会
(all in Japanese)
...and some basic information in English on the knife museum in Seki.
Knife Museum (Seki, Japan): Top Tips Before You Go - TripAdvisor

No harm in emailing them in simple English explaining your desire to meet experts. My experience is that Japanese experts will go a long way to helping non-Japanese enthusiasts, so it's worth a go.
 

japana

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Thanks so much guys! I don't have a problem with communicating in Japanese ;) Want to learn it anyway and Google will definitely help :)
Any more advice will be much appreciated!
 

Mike Cash

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I don't have a problem with communicating in Japanese ;) Want to learn it anyway and Google will definitely help :)
If your plan for communicating in Japanese involves using Google to translate for you, you need to be aware that it is pretty awful. Keep your English input very short and simply phrased, avoiding idiomatic speech.
 

japana

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If your plan for communicating in Japanese involves using Google to translate for you, you need to be aware that it is pretty awful. Keep your English input very short and simply phrased, avoiding idiomatic speech.
Will do! Thanks!
 

nice gaijin

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Anthony Bourdain has a mini series called "Raw Craft," where he commissions bespoke items from master craftsmen. In episode 4 he commissions a chef knife from Bob Kramer, one of the finest blademakers in North America.

Kramer has recently teamed up with Henckels to make his knives commercially available, and they are produced in Seki. Bob Kramer Knives — Why Spend $300 on a Chef Knife?

I just remembered, I once visited a knife shop in Koedo back in 2006 with my host family... I googled "koedo knife shop" and my old blogspot post was the top result, haha: Ikki Nikki: Koedo – Sept 23rd

A demo from the shop

Apparently it's called "Machikan." Here's the address:
Saiwaicho 7-3, Kawagoe
phone: 049-222-1516
 

japana

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Anthony Bourdain has a mini series called "Raw Craft," where he commissions bespoke items from master craftsmen. In episode 4 he commissions a chef knife from Bob Kramer, one of the finest blademakers in North America.

Kramer has recently teamed up with Henckels to make his knives commercially available, and they are produced in Seki. Bob Kramer Knives — Why Spend $300 on a Chef Knife?

I just remembered, I once visited a knife shop in Koedo back in 2006 with my host family... I googled "koedo knife shop" and my old blogspot post was the top result, haha: Ikki Nikki: Koedo – Sept 23rd

A demo from the shop

Apparently it's called "Machikan." Here's the address:
Saiwaicho 7-3, Kawagoe
phone: 049-222-1516

Thanks for that! I've heard of Bob Kramer, I've also watched few videos of Walter Sorrells () I will definitely check this Machikan shop. Thanks!
 
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