Taramundi Cutlery in Spain
Country of the crafting :Spain
Region of the crafting :Asturias
Type of the crafting :Metal and ironwork
1. Geographic Area
This type of craftsmanship is very typical in the Asturias Area of Spain.
The Principality of Asturias is bathed to the north by the waters of the Cantabrian Sea, bordered to the west by the province of Lugo, to the south by the province of León and to the east by Cantabria.
2. Craft characteristics
It is especially known the crafts of the so-called “ferreiros”, that is
to say craftsmen who are dedicated to the manufacture of knives
and knives with carbon steel blades traditionally forged in small
craft workshops, and with wooden handles of different types, but
that were traditionally preferably of boxwood, with a decoration
made manually with shellac, drawing geometric shapes and using
colors that characterized and marked the own style of each
craftsman. Currently many pieces are also made in stainless steel,
and with different materials in the handles, incorporating even
precious metals until real jewelry pieces are made.
3. The technique
The craftsman works the dressage of the metal and carves the wood to make the handle, decorated in geometric colors. The blade is made of soft iron, brass, stainless steel and alpaca, and even silver. the handle is made with Area wood and heather, as well as oak, olive, ebony, etc., or non-wood materials, such as silver, deer antler velvet or cow.
4. Used materials
- The fundamental parts of the knife are the blade, the handle and the ring. The main material with which the sheets are manufactured today is stainless steel, more difficult to mold than carbon steel, a material traditionally used, but which has other advantages such as oxidation resistance.
- The handle is made with local wood (boxwood and heather) and has a refined decoration based on geometric carving that is combined with colors such as black, green and red. At present, other woods (oak, olive, ebony, etc.) and materials such as silver, deer or cow antlers have been incorporated. Its shape and decoration determines the differences between the different models of knives and among their creators.
- The ring or “ferrule” is the sheet that surrounds the upper end of the handle. It is manufactured from mild iron, brass, stainless steel and alpaca, and even silver.
The production of knives and pocket knives in Taramundi originated as a result of the territory’s own geophysical conditions, with iron deposits, abundance of water and forest wealth, which led to the installation of mallets and forges, and the development iron crafts.