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Takeda NAS knives

Mastering the Art of the Blade: Shosui Takeda's Journey in Knife Craftsmanship

In the quaint town of Niimi, Okayama Prefecture, an extraordinary legacy of blade making continues to thrive at Takeda Hamono—a blacksmith workshop founded in 1920 and relocated in 1951. The heart of this legacy is Shosui Takeda, a third-generation master blacksmith whose unparalleled skills in forging knives are recognized globally.

To celebrate the opening of its Quebec City location, Stay Sharp is releasing the pieces from its Takeda NAS 2024 collection for sale exclusively in Quebec City and Montreal boutiques from May 11, before making them available online.

The Heritage of Takeda Hamono

Shosui Takeda was practically born with a hammer in his hand, growing up in the sparks of the forge where his father and grandfather had previously stoked fires. Despite an early introduction to the family business, it wasn't until after university that Shosui truly embraced his destiny as a blacksmith. Since 1985, he has dedicated himself to crafting some of the finest blades, each a testament to his philosophy that every knife should be as good as practical.

Innovations in Steel and Craftsmanship

What sets Takeda knives apart is the material: Aogami Super Steel (NAS). Known for its high carbon content and superior hardness rating of 63-64 HRC, this steel ensures that each Takeda blade retains its edge longer while remaining easy to sharpen. Shosui’s NAS series knives, clad in stainless steel, represent a significant innovation, offering the traditional sharpness of carbon steel but with much less maintenance required.

The Art of Knife Making

Shosui Takeda’s approach to knife making is both an art and a science. The process begins with selecting the finest Aogami Super Blue steel, known for its difficulty to forge but unmatched in quality. Each blade undergoes a meticulous forging and heat treatment process, including a unique three-day 'yaki-ire' heating and cooling procedure that enhances the steel's properties.

This attention to detail ensures that each knife is not only a functional tool but also a piece of art.

Philosophy and Future Vision

Takeda's philosophy is rooted in a relentless pursuit of perfection. He believes in the craftsmanship over commercialism, choosing techniques that enhance the knife’s quality, even if they demand more effort and time. His dedication is reflected in the continuous improvement of his knives, driven by customer feedback and his own critical assessment.

Looking forward, Takeda does not plan to introduce new models just for the sake of expansion. Instead, he focuses on refining existing designs, staying true to the demands and feedback from users who cherish the performance and artistry of Takeda knives.

A Legacy of Excellence

Takeda knives are more than just tools; they are a bridge between traditional craftsmanship and modern needs. They embody a philosophy that values quality, performance, and artistry above all else. For Shosui Takeda, every knife is a continuation of his family's legacy and a reflection of his personal journey in the timeless art of Japanese blacksmithing. Visit our Takeda section to discover our selection. 

In the world of fine blades, Shosui Takeda’s creations are not just instruments of cutting but a celebration of a life dedicated to the mastery of his craft. Each knife from Takeda Hamono is not only a slice of history but a piece of the future, crafted with care, destined to last, and designed to perform.

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