Shou sugi Ban / The traditional Japanese art of charred wood

Known as yakisugi in Japanese, shou sugi ban is an old Japanese technique that dates back to the 18th-century where it was primarily used to protect rural homes and warehouses from fires.  

This ancient process, which paradoxically actually makes the wood fire-resistant, is now gaining popularity in the west for its aesthetic appeal, endurance-waterproofness, fire/rot/insect resistance and eco-friendliness. As a treatment for contemporary exteriors and indoor furnishings alike, you can even find variations elevated to fine art. The gravitas imparted by the process and finished result (called yakisugi) are undeniable, a blackening of the wood that reveals clean, distinct lines and an inherent textural beauty.

Although other types of wood are also being employed in the west, the technique was traditionally used with cryptomeria japonica, a species indigenous to Japan that's also known as Japanese cedar. The wood surface is charred to render a deep charcoal-black it is then cooled, cleaned, and finished with a natural oil, making it a natural way to preserve timber structures without using chemicals.

Indigenous woods of Vancouver Island like Western Red Cedar, Douglas Fir, etc have reacted very well using this technique. Being wood specialists - we can integrate our experience with this method into your project.