Teruyasu Fujiwara, considered to be amongst the greatest living blacksmiths, has left Japan for the first time in his life at the insistence of the owner of Calgary’s Knifewear.

The Fujiwara family has been honing their craft for more than 130 years. Teruyasu continued the family tradition and began constructing high quality knives four decades ago.

Kevin Kent owns six knife stores including Knifewear, a precision Japanese cutlery store situated on 9 Avenue Southeast, and has been in contact with Fujiwara for years in an attempt to bring the blacksmith to Canada.

“Him and his father invented putting a carbon steel core with stainless around it,” explains Kent of Teruyasu’s process. “It’s a bit technical but there are a lot of knife makers following that.”

“In fact, I think it’s the smartest way to build a knife.”

Kent’s persistence paid off and customers at the Inglewood store lined up to for an opportunity to meet the craftsman and have him engrave their knives.

During Fujiwara’s time in Canada, he will be greeted by the Japanese general consulate and visit Banff where he hopes to set aside time for fishing.