Traditional Japanese Lacquer was originally done using Urushi although several synthetic Lacquers are now available.
Urushi is a natural plant derived Lacquer that provides a hard wearing surface with many finishes available from Matt colored stone finishes or Gloss with deep luster to inlays and various textures.
Kashu is currently the most common synthetic available and is generally the offered alternative to Urushi although it does not offer as hard a surface nor the choices of finish or depth in gloss.
As Urushi is time consuming, expensive and hyper allergenic I wanted to offer an alternative that had all the same qualities but without the obvious negatives. Kashu did not offer me the finish options I enjoyed with Urushi so I sought an alternative superior product. After a lot of experimentation and frustration I can offer a product that is as close to Urushi as possible.
I offer a large range of traditional Lacquer options in both Urushi and synthetic or alternatively if the saya is for Martial arts training or doesnt warrant a high quality lacquer then a polycarbonate enamel might best suit.
This style of Lacquering is not just for Saya ( sword scabbard ) but also used on a lot of day to day objects including chopstick, jewelry boxes, tables and can even be done on pens. I also work on Katana kake ( sword stand ) and Tables as well as a number of other items.
I have studied a lot of the various methods of Japanese lacquering and have worked hard at being able to produce some of the more difficult techniques such as the original style of ishime shown below.
Pictures of some of the available finishes below.