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Custom Koshirae Builds by Keichodo


Keichodo
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Greetings sword mavens,

 

I just got back one my client's custom koshirae and thought I would share it with you. The client provided all the fittings and the koshirae was then created from scratch...

 

The lacquer style for the saya is called fuemaki and consists of black rings.  It is a nice visual alternative to the standard and conventional black gloss finish commonly seen.

 

I have photographs of over thirty custom koshirae that I have coordinated for a variety of clients.  I am putting together a catalog to entice interest. If you would like to see more....let me know!

 

1) wood foundation/tsuka and saya 
2) antiqued ray skin
3) standard silk wrap
4) saya fuemaki lacquer work
5) tsunagi wooden dummy blade
 
The price for this particular koshirae came to yen 222,000....
 
Best,
 
Robert Hughes
 

Fuemaki 1.jpg

Fuemaki 2.jpg

Fuemaki 3.jpg

Fuemaki 4.jpg

Fuemaki 5.jpg

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Thanks for the above compliments guys!

 

Here is another custom koshirae done in fuemaki style but this one alternates between flat black and gloss black rings on the saya which gives a little more contrast.

 

Best,

Robert Hughes

black fuemaki.jpeg

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Keep up the compliments and I will keep up the flow of custom koshirae images...

 

This next one is Higo style with a partial inryo kesami style saya done in red ishime finish...

 

The tsuka has black and red lacquered ray skin and is wrapped in green suede leather.....

 

All the fittings were antique pieces.....

 

Best,

 

Robert

Higo 1.jpeg

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Hi John,

 

Yes, I have set up a few.... Sadly, I didn't take photos of many of them... Check out the attached pictures.

 

The lacquer is a gloss brown which doesn't come out very well under the lighting. 

 

The tsukamaki is in kincha jabaramaki style..... in hand it looked quite spectacular.

 

Best,

 

Robert

Handachi Koshirae.jpg

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Just in case anyone is interested, here an itomaki tachigoshirae I did for a client about twenty years ago....

 

The ito was kincha jabaramaki... The lacquer was red with gold tsuishu...although it is hard to see the gold veins throughout the lacquer...in hand it was stunning especially the way the one well-placed high relief gold lacquer mitsudomoe mon.... sets it off.......

 

This package was about yen 450,000 at that time......

 

Best,

 

Robert

Itomaki tachigoshirae.jpg

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Okay.....one more for today.....

 

This koshirae has a white jabaramaki tsuka with a black lacquered samesaya....

 

It is not so easy to find such large ray skins these days.... but I have a few ready to go!

 

Best,

 

Robert

Jabaramaki with Samesaya.jpg

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Thank you for sharing your work. Gorgeous koshirae!

 

The last koshirae, the cord wrap on the saya, I don't recognize it (the cross-knot). I don't think I've seen it before. Do you have it know if there's a name for it?

 

Edit: I checked the one booklet I have that explains cord wraps and details different koshirae and this knot isn't listed. 

 

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Greetings everyone!

 

Thank you for the compliments.  All the work to create these koshirae is done by trained Japanese artisan/tradespeople. 

I just handle the project from start to finish.  I have been involved in such project work in Japan since 1986 when I needed

to get my own blades set up in koshirae for training.  Every year, I would help my sword acquaintances get several koshirae made

but I didn't aggressively promote this business as I have been teaching in Japanese universities and colleges for over forty years.

At 65, I will face mandatory retirement from my university, so I am now thinking about expanding this service as the next stage of

my employment in Japan. Unfortunately, I didn't take photos of all the projects due to time limitations, but I have many that will

serve as a kind of catalog.

 

If you have a project, feel free to discuss it with me through my e-mail address: keichodo@yahoo.com...

 

P.S. Axel....the sageo knot is a known variant in Japan.... not sure exactly what the name is.....

keep checking sources and you will likely find it... it is too nice for me just to make it up myself....

 

I will post a few more koshirae when I have time but this week will be busy at university....

 

Best,

 

Robert

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On 6/27/2021 at 9:27 AM, Keichodo said:

Okay.....one more for today.....

 

This koshirae has a white jabaramaki tsuka with a black lacquered samesaya....

 

It is not so easy to find such large ray skins these days.... but I have a few ready to go!

 

Best,

 

Robert

 

 

Oh My Word. That is stunning.

 

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Hi everyone,

 

I have time to add a few more custom order koshirae projects for your viewing pleasure .  I neglected to mention that the clients supplied their own period fittings for all these projects.

 

The next koshirae is an attention seeker with exposed solid gold botan menuki set off with red samegawa and black ito.  The saya finish is tsuishu with a red base and black and gold veins.

 

Best,

Robert

 

 

 

471566854_Koshiraeredtsuishu4.thumb.jpeg.b30df6501542201c73778a8e6df1a81a.jpeg

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Here is a regal wakizashi for your viewing pleasure.  The majestic color of the jabara maki is best described as Byzantine purple. 

While the saya is finished in black ishime which is reminiscent of the porous surface of a stone.....

 

Best,

Robert

830698708_Wakizashikoshiraejabaraishime.thumb.jpg.3edd587e786d8a579c75e38e924ba149.jpg

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Hi John,

 

If you go back to the last katana koshirae I posted and click on the photo enlarge it, you will see a similar style.  This is commonly referred to as "tsuishu" but the terminology varies in different localities.  There are many different color combinations, but usually done in three distinct colors. e.g.. green, black, and gold.  I will post a few more....

 

Best,

Robert

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Hi Robert,

 

I am wondering if any clients have had problem with cracks? Different climates have different humidity and living in the North we have large variation in humidity (in Winter very low (water is snow), and in Summer a bit higher).  I very much guess our/my North is similar to that in Hokkaido. 

 

Best Björn

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On 7/2/2021 at 12:01 PM, PNSSHOGUN said:

Hi Robert, I wonder if any clients have requested Wakasa Nuri for the Saya? I used to own a nice sword with this and heard it was quite laborious (i.e. expensive).

post-3926-0-47385600-1554195321.thumb.png.17ba54174b904164fbf896c706528c3b.png

I don’t think this Style should be much more expensive. It is less polishing work in the lower layers and polishing is ~90% of the laquer work. 

 

EDIT: i added the "much", because different color pigments change the behavior of the lacqer so every difference in color can make it take longer. I compared only with the examples in this thread. I think all of them are very nice and took a lot of work but my favorite is the first one.

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