Most people around the world know about the famous Japanese Samurai and their important role in Japanese history. They may also know about the Japanese sword smiths who made the Japanese swords (Nihontō) for the Samurai, which became their primary weapon and is considered to be symbolic of their authority, honour and ‘warrior spirit’. According to history, about 700 years ago the Master sword smith “Motoshige” chose Seki (Gifu prefecture) to be the location for his workshop due to the abundance of suitable raw materials that were available in the area. During Japan’s Muromachi era (1338-1573) there were over 300 different sword smiths working in Seki.
Throughout Japan, it was widely known that the highest quality of swords were made in Seki (Referred to as "Seki-den", or "関伝”, in Japanese). The long history of blade smithing in Seki City continues to this day: It is currently one of the world’s largest producers of cutlery and many of the traditional sword making techniques are still in daily use.
Sword smith "Fujiwara Kanefusa" is one of only a few practicing sword smiths who exist in the current generation. He makes genuine Japanese swords using traditional techniques that have been passed down by his forebears for over 700 years.
The kitchen knife maker, "Fujiwara Kanefusa", is owned and managed by a relative of the sword smith, "Fujiwara Kanefusa". They make a range of high quality knives that are based on classic designs and produce them using ancient Japanese techniques that have long been associated with Japanese sword making.
We had the chance to get the opinion of an experienced knife-making craftsman regarding Fujiwara Kanefusa knives. He told us that while the knives are simple in appearance, they are well made when you consider their retail price. He noted that Fujiwara Kanefusa carefully perform each of the main knife making processes, particularly heat-treatment, grinding and sharpening.