Urushi pens

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URUSHI TECHNIQUE

Urushi is a type of lacquer processed from the sap of the Japanese lacquer tree.

With a history dating back to Japan’s Jomon period (13,100 BCE– 400 BCE), Urushi is said to have been used not only as a coating and ornamentation, but also as an adhesive to bind handgrips to stone axe handles.

Urushi was subsequently used for its antiseptic and preservative properties to protect valuable items such as furniture and musical instruments from wear, and was eventually elevated to use as an aesthetic element in works of art.

Traditional Urushi lacquerware techniques are still employed throughout Japan.

So how does it work ?

 Once hardened, the urushi lacquer forms a protective coating against the surface on which it’s applied. It’s both durable and aesthetically-pleasing (in fact, add some gold or silver powder on top of the traditional wet urushi, and that becomes the maki-e designs that are also very prominent in fountain pens).

The full process of making an urushi fountain pen may take several weeks to months to complete. It must be conducted under strict supervision, as any error can permanently stain the finished pen.

For fountain pen collectors and enthusiasts, it’s certainly one of the sleekest and beautiful designs around.

URUSHI Raden TECHNIQUE

Penteo Samurai Raden11

Raden is a decorative technique that uses the iridescent parts of seashells like abalone, turban shells, and pearl oysters, which are shaved very thinly. Ra means a spiral shell and den means to decorate. The technique was conveyed to Japan from China about 1300 years ago, and marvelous examples can be seen at the Shoso-in Treasure House in Nara.
The seashell used for raden is classified as either thin or thick. Thin shell pieces are obtained by rubbing with a whetstone or simmering and peeling off the shell surface. They are no more than 0.1 millimeters in thickness. Gold or silver can also be applied to the reverse side of the shell so that it seems to glow from within.
Thick shell pieces are made by rubbing seashells flat with a whetstone, and approximately one millimeter thick. The special beauty of raden comes from the contrast between the jewel-like luster of seashells and the deep tones of the lacquer.

URUSHI NEGORO TECHNIQUE

Negoro refers to rustic and simple lacquerware that has been coated with black lacquer and then layered with a topcoat of red lacquer. Items often made using this technique include tables, trays and bowls. This lacquering style was originally applied to utensils used by monks in training at Negoro-ji, a Zen temple that prospered from the Kamakura period (1185-1333 CE) to the Muromachi period (approx. 1336-1573 CE). Negoro lacquerware offers an ever-changing beauty. Over the years, as it is used, the red lacquer fades to gradually reveal the black lacquer beneath.

For fountain pens, the wear is created by carfully wet sanding the red layer of urushi.

 

URUSHI TAMENURI TECHNIQUE

Penteo Samurai Spirit Dark Waters7

 

Tamenuri is an ancient traditional Japanese urushi technique.

Translucent urushi is applied to the special base coating, resulting in a unique deep patina which will naturally lighten and mature with use over time.

“Tame” means “pool” and “nuri” refers to the lacquer coating process. You can actually see through the layers of clear urushi lacquer as if you were looking into a pool. The black color is also mixed with translucent urushi to create darker coating.

When the process is finished, you can still see the base surface of colored urushi. After this coating process, the surface is polished by hand in order to attain greater transparency, allowing you to clearly see the underlying colored usurshi surface.

 

URUSHI ISHIME TECHNIQUE

Penteo Samurai Kuro Ishime6

 

Dry Urushi powder is sprinkled on a fresh layer of Urushi, after curring is covered with sveral layers of urushi.

The final goal is to create a stone like texture.

Additonal technique can be used, tamenuri or sprinke the surface with metal powder.

TSUGARU NURI TECHNIQUEs  KARA Nuri

Penteo Samurai Spirit Tsugaru Nuri V4

Tsugaru Nuri is the traditional lacquerware of the Tsugaru region in Aomori prefecture, centralized in Hirosaki city. Lacquerware crafts in Tsugaru has an extensive history dating back to the Edo period (1603 ~1868). The four styles practiced today are the Kara-nuri, Nanako-nuri, Monsha-nuri, and Nishiki-nuri.

 

Kara-nuri is the most popular style of Tsugaru Nuri and has the longest history. Kara-nuri is characterized by the speckled spots made using a special pallet knife with multiple circular holes. The lacquer is applied using this special tool, dried, then polished, a process that is repeated over and over again.
Each product is a one-of-a-kind item due to the intricate and time-consuming nature of the craft. This uniqueness is one of the highly valued features of Tsugaru Nuri.
The word “kara” of Kara-nuri stands for something that is unique and exceptional.

 

TSUGARU NURI TECHNIQUEs  NANAKO NURI

Penteo Samurai Nanako Nuri 8

Nanako-nuri is made using togidashi kawarinuri, a method in which the pattern design is made with seeds. When the first layer of colored lacquer is applied on the base, seeds are scattered across the surface to make small circles while still wet. The seeds are removed once the lacquer dries. The lacquer is then polished thoroughly to bring out the elegant circular shapes in the Edo komon style (designs with small elaborate patterns used for kimono during the Edo period). The term “nanako” originates from the resemblance of the circular shapes to nanako, or fish eggs

 

 

SEIREI NURI TECHNIQUE

Penteo Samurai Spirit Dragonfly6

Seirei – Nuri translates to Dragonfly wing pattern.

I ordered a custom ebonite fountain pen from PenTeo and it arrived yesterday. It is truly stunning, comfortable in hand despite the large diameter barrel and cap (I like larger pens, but this handles more like a mid-sized one) and was beautifully presented. I cannot wait to get more miles under its nib!

Superb, the size is excellent handling, good pen. I loaded it with iroshizuku ink asa gao and it works fine. The set is light which will allow to write long without fatigue. I am very happy with this pen. thank you so much!

The best moment is when I saw the pen and unscrewed the cap and section and barrel. It all screamed – EBONITE! And it is HUGE! Good weight and comfortable to write with. The cap does not post but you do not need to as it is a BIG pen. What an awesome pen! WOW! The pen writes superbly and the nib is buttery smooth. No skips. No hard starts. Good flow.

I ordered a custom ebonite fountain pen from PenTeo and it arrived yesterday. It is truly stunning, comfortable in hand despite the large diameter barrel and cap (I like larger pens, but this handles more like a mid-sized one) and was beautifully presented. I cannot wait to get more miles under its nib!

Superb, the size is excellent handling, good pen. I loaded it with iroshizuku ink asa gao and it works fine. The set is light which will allow to write long without fatigue. I am very happy with this pen. thank you so much!

The best moment is when I saw the pen and unscrewed the cap and section and barrel. It all screamed – EBONITE! And it is HUGE! Good weight and comfortable to write with. The cap does not post but you do not need to as it is a BIG pen. What an awesome pen! WOW! The pen writes superbly and the nib is buttery smooth. No skips. No hard starts. Good flow.

I ordered a custom ebonite fountain pen from PenTeo and it arrived yesterday. It is truly stunning, comfortable in hand despite the large diameter barrel and cap (I like larger pens, but this handles more like a mid-sized one) and was beautifully presented. I cannot wait to get more miles under its nib!

Superb, the size is excellent handling, good pen. I loaded it with iroshizuku ink asa gao and it works fine. The set is light which will allow to write long without fatigue. I am very happy with this pen. thank you so much!

The best moment is when I saw the pen and unscrewed the cap and section and barrel. It all screamed – EBONITE! And it is HUGE! Good weight and comfortable to write with. The cap does not post but you do not need to as it is a BIG pen. What an awesome pen! WOW! The pen writes superbly and the nib is buttery smooth. No skips. No hard starts. Good flow.

Contact me

If you want any of the fountain pen models that are currently in stock !

My email

penteo@penteopens.com

Location

Brno, Czech Republic, Europe

Open Hours

M-F: 10am – 17pm,

Email

penteo@penteopens.com