New Store Offers Eastern Items to a Western Audience

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http://www.SamuraiArmory.com has opened to offer high-quality reproductions of samurai armor, katanas, and paraphernalia, bringing the feel of feudal Japanese culture to the American public while paying respect to the traditions and formality of bushido. Samurai Armory has also begun a blog at http://www.SamuraiArmory.info to share a love of Japanese culture and history, inviting others to contribute their thoughts and questions.

Business owner Peter Chemel has opened a new online store at http://www.SamuraiArmory.com, offering high-quality reproductions of traditional samurai armor and accoutrements to the public. Far from the ordinary wholesale vendor of cheap ninja-to knock-offs, Peter is dedicated to providing only the finest items in his new store.

"I had previously considered offering less expensive display swords, but ultimately decided against it; I wanted to maintain high quality, but at an affordable price," explains Peter, who takes pride in the caliber of his merchandise. "These swords are made to the specifications of the traditional style of folded steel, but without the import costs associated with buying direct from Japan. The process is incredibly complex -- the steel is folded, heated, and cooled to exacting specifications. I previously dealt in some cheap display samurai swords, and I love them and they look great, but the ones I sell now are made with precision, sticking to traditional methods of forging swords. Each sword comes with a choice of four different styles of blade, depending on your preference."

Peter's love of Asian craftsmanship has its roots in his childhood and family. "My grandparents lived in the Orient -- they owned a factory in China -- and I grew up with that kind of background; hearing stores about it, seeing pictures. Our house is still decorated with things my grandparents brought back from China and Japan, so I have a strong attachment to that culture. It's always been a part of my life," says Peter with reverence, citing the beginnings of a lifetime of respect for Eastern culture. "I grew up fencing, as well -- I was a foil fencer, and I enjoyed it a lot. With my grandparents' background and my love of swords, this was a natural match."

This enthusiasm led not only to the formation of http://www.SamuraiArmory.com, but the creation of the accompanying blog at http://www.SamuraiArmory.info -- a place where aficionados of Asian craftsmanship can discuss the traditions of the samurai and their own collections of authentic replicas or traditional swords. "I've always admired the spirit of the samurai: their bravery and their courage, their skill and loyalty. It's very similar to knights in armor -- to chivalry -- but the samurai tradition went on for centuries," says Peter. "As a lover of all Asian items and traditions, I want to deal with my customers on a personal level. I'm really interested in the product and making a customer happy with the product, but there are also posts that go beyond just what you see in the store -- related subjects, the whole sport and culture of it."

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Jason Thurston

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