Introducing the Superior Labor x Nomado Store Higonokami & Pen Case
December 01, 20183 min read
At Nomado Store, we tend to focus on bags, stationery and small leather accessories. Our first three collaboration projects with TSL were a pin, 2 bags, the fourth a simple brass charm which was actually a spin-off from the bag projects.
We decided to go for something completely different after that and focused on designing a leather accessory. The challenge in this case was to create a product which was simultaneously unavailable in our existing assortment, typically Japanese and aligned with our values and way of life, especially quality, materials, portability and practicality and with those of The Superior Labor.
The Higonokami knife (see article here for more details) is one of the most practical Japanese items we have ever owned. With an interesting history originating in the Japanese sword-making tradition in the Hyogo region (not far from Kobe), generations of schoolchildren, craftsmen, gardeners and hikers have used these simple knives on a daily basis for everything from sharpening pencils to peeling apples or pruning plants.
In the same way that Japanese fountain pens are designed around the highest quality available nibs at a specific price point, the Higonokami is designed around the blade. These very high quality blades are made of different grades of folded steel (just like katana - swords), the simple handle is made of a folded over sheet of metal, often left unfinished.
Given the interest of our customers in stationery and pencils, we thought it would be a great idea to create a case for a Higonokami knife and pen that would not only be extremely practical, but also a perfect showcase for the very high level of craftsmanship we have come to expect from the Superior Labor.
We started by selecting a Higonokami from Hyogo-based Japanese brand Mujun. Mujun are a craft collective offering beautiful items which are traditionally made in the Hyogo region. Standard Higonokami knives can be pretty “pedestrian”, cosmetically-speaking. The Mujun Fuji knife is handmade by craftsmen in the traditional way but with seriously upgraded looks.
'Fuji Knife' is a multipurpose foldable knife, which is both functional and beautiful; when folded, the engraved handle and blade form a drawing of Mt. Fuji from a famous view in Miho peninsula. The end of the solid brass handle is a bottle opener. The high quality double-edged blade and the brass handle ensure that you will get years of use out of the knife.
There are many knife cases out there, so we decided to make this one different by adding a pen compartment (no pen included, check out our selection if you need one) and a Superior Labor Brass Money Clip on the rear to allow you to clip it to your Traveler’s Notebook, inside pocket, etc.
The case is made of TSL’s famous undyed Tochigi leather, which is smooth and supple, but robust. The leather will darken naturally to a kind of cognac colour with time.
Snap closure & pen compartment
Brass money clip
TSL added some refinements, including a more elegant shape, snap closure and the Nomado Store “Lucky Turtle” logo. Every case comes with a beautiful Fuji Higonokami knife packaged separately.