the meister

能作 / ノウサク

nousaku : 柔らかな思考が生む、柔らかなうつわ

Flexible and highly adaptable. Nosaku’s tin-ware holds its unique features that draw the user’s attention. And like their product, the company itself has a flexible mind and energy that stimulates our brand “Soen”.



Origin / トリガーは能作氏との出会い

New York, Summer 2016. Our brand Soen gained its chance to launch when Mr. Nosaku and our product designer Ken Suzuki during the international trade fair “NY NOW”. Nosaku had fans all around the world, and Suzuki was no exception. Suzuki asked for a tour of their factory, and in response with the invitation, Mr Nosaku suggested Suzuki, to design a product upon visiting. That triggered the development of the iconic, double circle “Soen” design. When Mr Nosaku saw the prototypes of the tumbler and the sake cup, he again gave Suzuki a suggestion, to make a variety of cups using different materials. With Sghr from glass brand and NAGAE from porcelain brand added, aete became the centre of the platform to develop the brand “Soen” further, to create products with shared shapes, using different materials.

2016年夏、NY。能作が国際見本市「NY NOW」に出展していた際、プロダクトデザイナーの鈴木健が、同社の代表・能作克治氏と出会ったことが双円の始まり。世界中にファンをもつ能作だが、鈴木もその一人だった。工場見学をしてみたいと相談すると、能作氏は快諾したうえで「せっかくなら錫(すず)を使って何か作っていらしたらどうですか」と提案。その一言がきっかけとなり、鈴木は双円の原型となるふたつの円がモチーフの、おちょこやタンブラーをデザイン。その試作品を見た能作氏が「錫では熱い飲み物が入れられないので、他の素材でも作ってみませんか」とさらなる提案をしたことで、ガラスや磁器など他素材のメーカーも仲間入り。鈴木が代表を務めるアエテが中心となり、同じかたちをシェアし製品づくりをする「双円」ブランドが、かたちづくられていった。


Hand-finished quality / 手仕事が誘う深い輝き

The most challenging part of the manufacturing process was the amount of handwork involved. The iconic softness of the tin-ware comes from the use of 100% pure tin, and it’s too vulnerable for mechanical production. Thus, almost the entire crafting process had to be carried out by hand with precision. Unlike how regular metal casting is used for the production of common metal products, our tin-ware relies on green sand or silicone casting. The former involves the use of a mould made of a mixture of sand, clay and water, and soft silicone mould for the latter, which adds a smoother finish to the final product. Both casting processes are carried out in an unimaginably scorching factory condition, where Nosaku’s craftsman pours hot, molten tin into the mould carefully one at a time. After casting, each product is polished thoroughly by hand to give its distinctive gleaming finish. With precision and care, each product is entirely handcrafted.



Innovation and passion / 挑み続ける情熱に鼓舞されて

Nosaku’s tin-ware industry originates back to the moment when it had a business exclusively as a fabric store when Mr Nosaku himself designed an original product using 100% pure tin. This movement has constructed the company’s brand recognition up to the present day. Plus, Mr Nosaku himself has a unique background. A graduate of an Art college and a former professional cameraman who upon marriage, entered the carrier of artisanship. The fact that Mr Nosaku did not fear adaptation, and also his carrier background enabled us to launch Soen. Despite that, not only Mr Nosaku but the company as a whole share the same passion for crafting. Workers adore challenges and fear nothing in order to achieve their goals. Not only as tradition or artisanship, but their passion expands the possibility of the entire crafting, and the brand undoubtedly, is one of the leading comrades of Soen.