Sven Knudsen, elder brother of Teddy, is one of the most important and influential of the early Danish pipe makers. He started repairing and making pipes with Poul Rasmussen in the famous "Suhr Pibemageri" (pipe workshop) in 1956, while Poul was still being instructed in pipe making by Sixten Ivarsson. Sven ended up designing and carving many of the shapes subsequently identified with Rasmussen. At Suhr, he hired and trained Hans "Former" Nielsen, who at Sven's urging succeeded him as factory manager at W. Ø. Larsen. (Click here to see some of the pipes that Former made during his training period, and which he still keeps in his workshop). In 1959, he left Rasmussen, and started his own workshop, first in Copenhagen, and then moving to the country town of Præstoe, where he lived from 1963-1973. He sold his pipes to Larsen, Poul Olsen of "My Own Blend," and Pipe Dan, where they were featured prominently in the catalog for many years (you can view the Pipe Dan catalog here). In addition, his pipes were very popular in Japan, thanks to a personal recommendation from Sixten Ivarsson--high praise indeed. His daughter Marianne tells the story of Japanese customers who would come to stay in the country for days at a time, using up enormous amounts of hot water, and eating rice, raw fish and seaweed--very odd in the eyes of a young girl, especially in the days before Sushi restaurants and Japanese hot tubs became popular.Sven's brother Teddy Knudsen joined him in 1970, and together they made pipes under the "Dantonian PipeWorks" name, publishing a beautiful catalog that was distributed world wide. From 1973 to 1997 Sven made pipes for private customers in his workshop in downtown Næstved, in southern Sealand, just a few miles from his good friends Former and Jess Chonowitsch. He retired from pipe making in 1997, his dexterity impaired by severe neuritis and peripheral neuropathy from diabetes.
Sven Knudsen Pipes