Following the success of our original dip pens, we were inspired to introduce a companion item to expand our collection. We wanted to explore a new material to complement the classic and formal feel of our dip pens in Japanese cherry and aluminium.
With the help of designer Makoto Koizumi, we set out to create our next tool for writing with joy — the Hasami ware pen rest.
We imagined a pen rest with a comfortable size and weight for resting the pen on an angle. It would be made of a material that’s gentle on even delicate glass pens, with a form that harmonises with our ink bottles and pens. All while offering a different aesthetic and character from our existing Japanese cherry pen rest.
Taking inspiration from droplets, Koizumi proposed a concept that resembled beads of water, with a charm and presence we couldn’t resist.
Our search for the ideal material and craft region to bring these forms to life led us to the Japanese pottery style of Hasami ware.
Hasami ware, or Hasami-yaki in Japanese, is known for the beauty of its white porcelain and wide variety of glazes. In the early 17th century, a potter visiting Japan from abroad discovered a source of porcelain clay in the Hasami and Arita region, marking the beginning of the long history of Hasami ware.
Today, the chimney stacks of former potteries remain a prominent sight in the towns with pottery wholesalers lining the main streets. A stroll through the towns gives visitors the unmistakable sense of being in Japan’s ceramic capital.
Here, with the assistance of wholesale dealer Marushige Pottery, we met with local kiln Koushun-gama who would craft our pen rest.
Koushun-gama was founded in 1984 by Haruho Baba. The seasoned Hasami-yaki artisan continues to innovate and develop new glazes and firing techniques to create exquisite colours and textures. Our enthusiasm reached new heights upon encountering the impressive catalogue of glazes at his kiln, and our initial idea of having one or two glaze finishes quickly grew into testing almost twenty variations, thanks to Baba’s generosity and patience.
Finally, we narrowed our selection down to four glazes, and two sizes to depict the natural formation of droplets. The slim, longer design holds two pens. The colours and shapes have been carefully curated to spark the imagination and inspire pairings with an assortment of pens.
Koizumi and our team agreed that the finished pieces are beautiful craft objects in their own right, tactile to the touch and perfect to simply admire as ornaments.
While the pen rest is often a quiet achiever, we hope that our Hasami pen rest finds its place among your treasured stationery collection, and brings pleasure every time you pick up your pen or take a rest from writing.
View the Hasami pen rest