There are right ways and wrong ways by which a katana is displayed in your home or office. The Japanese katana cannot be displayed casually on the horizontal stand. The manner which it is displayed conveys your intentions, and somtimes the status of your nation. (not to mention there is a front/back side to each sword).

Order of placement for multiple swords:

If you own multiple swords and would like to display them on a multiple tiered stand, the order should be the Tanto (top tier), Wakizashi (middle tier), then the Katana (lower tier). This order directly corresponds to the order which the swords are worn on the samurais body as he dress and prepares himself each morning. The Katana is carried by hand to the entrance of the home and worn last, so it should go on the very bottom of the stand.

Displaying a sword in scabbard and out of scabbard:

Generally, the katana sword is kept within its scabbard when displaying it in your home. There are some circumstances when it is appropriate to display a katana out of its scabbard, one of these is if your nation is at war. When displaying in such a manner, you are conveying aggression and guarded attitude and the handle of your katana will be pointing to your right.

Cutting edge orientation:

EDGE UP - When not on horses, the samurai sword is worn with the blade side up on the left side of the body. This is also the popular style adopted in the more recent periods. A blade worn on the left side allows you to draw with your right hand. The upward facing edge allows you to cut downwards in front of you as you draw the sword from the sheath. Likewise, the sword on a stand should be displayed with the blade edge facing upwards. This also allows you to elimiate the pressure placed on the cutting edge.

Grip Orientation (as you face a displayed sword):

Grip pointing to the right - This conveys an aggressive or non-trusting intention. This is because you are able to draw the sword directly from the display stand with your right hand and respond to any immediate threat.

Grip pointing to the left - This conveys a non-hostile attitude and should be the way your swords are displayed on a regular basis. A left facing grip cannot be drawn with the right hand and has to be picked up, rotated (if grabbed with the left) or switch hands (if grabbed with the right) with before it can be drawn for use. By displaying your katana in this manner, you are stating that you feel no need threat nor harbor hostility that would require you to quickly reach for your sword. Additionally, a left facing grip with cutting edge upwards allows the front of your katana to face forward.

Vertical Stands:

Shogun Stands for Tachi - A Japanese sword can also be displayed vertically on a shogun stand. When using a verticle stand, the edge of your sword should be facing the stand and the handle side down.

Storing Katanas:

For long term storage of your katana, the proper way to do this is to store your blade separately within a shirasaya. A shirasaya is a naturally dried, unlacquered sheath designed to allow for your blade to breath. The functional, lacquered scabbard is believed to be bad for the sword if stored for prolonged periods of time because it doesn not allow for the blade to breath properly. Often times, valuable blades are stored separately and only the scabbard along with the fittings are displayed in public.

We do not provide nor sell shirasaya by itself as an aftermarket part. We do, however, apply a light coat of oil on all of our blades after use and re-oil our own swords on a regular basis whether it is used or not.

 

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