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06 September, 2015

The search for extraordinary makers and traditional manufacturers, their works and their stories has taken and continues to take Story HH all over the world, from the potters’ workshop housed in an old silk worm farm in the Kyoto Prefecture, Japan, to the old porcelain capital of China, Jingdezhen, to the Lake District Fells. In each case, Story HH, sources from, as well as works with, highly skilled makers and traditional manufacturers in the design and development of exquisite hand crafted and traditionally manufactured works. In doing so, Story HH seeks to promote the luxury of craftsmanship and design through the unique stories of each of the makers, from the techniques and materials used, to the inspiration behind a particular piece.

Referred to as the female “Indiana Jones” of the gemstone world, Story HH continues to forge a close relationship with jewellery designer, Paloma Sanchez. Recognised as one of the thirty best jewellery designers in the world and featured in “The Unique Book, The Best Jewellery Designers” launched at the World Watch and Jewellery Fair 2013, Baselworld, G.I.A qualified gemologist, Paloma Sanchez designs stunning, one of a kind pieces from personally sourced specimen quality gemstones. The quest for unique gemstones has taken Paloma across the globe, from the mines of Madagascar, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Tanzania, China, Myanmar, to those in Colombia and Arizona. Paloma Sanchez has already cemented her reputation internationally with her work featuring in Vogue UK, Toronto and Vancouver Fashion Weeks, and Gemasolar, Seville.

World renowned potter, Takeshi Yasuda is another example of a maker with whom Story HH has the privilege of working. While drinking coffee around a wood burning stove in his studio in Jingdezhen, China, Takeshi Yasuda regales Story HH with his story as a potter and his relationship with that “magical material”, mud – a story that spans over five decades and one which has taken Takeshi Yasuda on a ground breaking journey across the globe from Japan, to the United Kingdom, to China. Riding the 1960’s wave, Takeshi Yasuda trained and emerged as one of the new generation of potters in Mashiko, Japan – a generation that was prepared to experiment with surface and glaze effects, as well as abstracting ceramic objects. Takeshi notes that the atmosphere in Mashiko, at that time, was charged with creativity, excitement and possibility. It was that same charged atmosphere that drew Takeshi Yasuda to Jingdezhen, formerly the porcelain capital of China, almost forty years later and that has lead him to experiment and work with celadon-glazed porcelain, resulting in the creation of some breathtaking work. With a legacy of heavy weight exhibitions under his belt, including at the V&A and for the Craft Council London, Takeshi Yasuda has also taught at various universities and arts schools in the United Kingdom.

The Tajika Haruo Scissor Works, a fourth generation Japanese family-owned business makes beautiful hand-crafted copper and steel scissors, harnessing techniques and a reverence for raw materials that have remained for the most part unchanged for a century. Invited into the Tajika workshop in Hyogo Prefecture, Japan, Story HH was able to witness at first hand the immense skill required by the father and son team in the hand-working of these exceptionally ergonomic and perfectly functional tools – as the metal is first tempered by the heat, then shaped by a hammer, sharpened and then stamped with the Tajika brand.

These are snapshots from the stories of some of the highly skilled makers with whom Story HH has the privilege of sourcing from and working in the design and development of exquisite hand crafted and traditionally manufactured works. Further stories, as well as the works of the makers themselves can be found on the Story HH website.

Story HH: The luxury of craftsmanship and design told through the unique stories of the makers.

Images @ Story HH.

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