Tsuge Ichirin Pipes2 Total
The Tsuge (pronounced roughly "Su-gay") pipe company is led by pipe maker Kazuhiro Fukuda, who has been carving for the company for nearly 60 years. Initially, they produced pipes out of ivory and briar which were all classic shapes that were small and stained dark. Kazuhiro went to Denmark in 1969 to work with Sixten Ivarsson for a month and Sixten was able to teach him how to hone his innate skill, which he took back to Japan to help the company become famous the world over.
While the factory produces many machine-made pipes, Tsuge also has available a handcrafted line called Ikebana, available here. Most of these pipes are carved in the shape/drill Danish fashion with very strong Japanese aesthetics. Frequent use of plateau and Japanese bamboo adorn many of the high-grade pieces. Each stem is hand cut from solid vulcanite rod, with a beautifully polished vulcanite tenon from the same piece. Slight asymmetry allows many of the shapes to utilize the wonderful grain and Japanese aesthetic. A few of their pipes even are dressed in ultra high grade Japanese lacquer for the Namiki line.