The Ultimate Upgrade
A few years ago, I decided to gradually
start upgrading my mokuhanga supplies.
Better quality carving tools came first, then
printing brushes as well as higher quality washi.
Most recently, I called McClains and
made the ultimate upgrade when I placed an order
for a “hon” baren.
Lucky I called when I did as it turns out
the exchange rate was the lowest it’s been in years
so the baren was considerably less than expected.
“Hon” means “real” in Japanese, and is the
highest quality and most authentic baren available.
Each hon baren is made to order and
can take as long as 6 months to a year to receive
depending on how busy the baren maker is. Mine took only
three months to arrive, so I was lucky to not have to wait too long!
It was obvious as soon as I took it out of the box that this baren
was exquisitely crafted and vastly superior to
any of the previous barens that I’ve used.
I was delighted to find a wonderful story
on printmaker David Bull’s website
where he writes about his visit to Mr. Gosho’s
home/workspace to place an order for his own baren.
You can read the story here.