knives and Cutlery from Oaxaca
The main producers of forged knives and cutlery are Ocotlán and Tlaxiaco where it is possible to see the production of these shiny bladed masterpieces. The master artisans that create these intricate designs are part of a lineage in Oaxaca that dates back to colonial times when sword, knife and machete production was in high demand. Nowadays most knife and cutlery production takes place in Ocotlán and Tlaxicao and has focus on producing decorative, artistic pieces. While there is unlikely to any problem taking a set of cutlery back with you, it might be worth checking if you are going to get into trouble before putting a sword in your suitcase, people tend to think the worst nowadays. At Tlaxiaco aside from cutlery and knives the knife-makers also make lead miniatures.
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My first visit to Mexico was in 1970 and my 1st knife purchase was in the DF at the Nacional Monte de Piedad. Later, I bought a knife in a shop on Corregidora , also in the DF. 'Oaxaca' meant nothing to me; yet. Soon I learned that 'Oaxaca' and its environs was knife making territory so I booked passage on a train from the Buenavista station on Insurgentes Norte and a day later, found myself in Oaxaca. There, I went around to different shops to buy and order knives. I would draw what I wanted and in a few days, I had my knife. I also came across older knives with maker marks that no local was familiar with; 'DZB', 'LB', 'MB'..Who were these makers that turned out such beautiful knives so long ago? One in particular that had a silver overlay handle with hand engraving all over it looked to be 1920's or even earlier. I never sold any of these knives and continue to admire them today.
Who was Gustave (George) Bellon? When did he arrive in Oaxaca/ Please help me out with some info. How about 'D Z B'?? A knife maker from Oaxaca...? Both made beautiful, artistic knives and I would like to share their story. No hay problema si Ud. habla y escriba en Espanol. Yo tambien pudiera contestar y platicar en su ideoma.Thanks/ GraciasCraig