My experience at Kitchen Provisions- by Ziggy K-Tomioka

The lovely Ziggy joined us for work experience for a week or so in the run up to Easter. He was enthusiastic and adaptable and an all round good egg, particularly when we threw him in at the deep end... "Ziggy, can you ask the blacksmith in Japanese if he would like the forge any hotter?" (he does speak Japanese, we aren't that left field).

One of his days - to reflect work life in 2024 - was a day working from home, completing a range of marketing, social media and research tasks. First of these was to write a blog post, with accompanying photos, and here it is! Thanks Ziggy, you were a delight!


"During my time at Kitchen Provisions, I have learnt so much and had such a great experience, getting to know the different branches and the different products and even blossoming in the art of knives! Every day there was something to learn and see- at some points really exciting and at others calming and peaceful, a rollercoaster of happy emotions throughout the day. Although I was feeling tired after work, I was happy and felt joy at the thought of the day I had just finished!

On the very first day I travelled with Helen to a forge located on a petting zoo, where we all watched in awe at the pure skill and adaptability of Kato-san; who is a master knife maker, as he breezed through making 3 elegant and expertly crafted knives at this forge in which he had not once stepped foot in before. Within an hour he had completely mastered the unconventional tools and unfamiliar environment to create these knives, a testament to his skill and mastery. After a few hours we headed on a uber boat to take a look at some other branches and show kato-san and our guests around London in a way too. 

Over the next few days I learnt how some of the shops function on an employee level and got to grips on dealing with stock and helping generally in the shop (mostly borough yards). Each day I helped staff to manage shop duties like stamping bags and checking stock, although minor jobs, I was glad that I could help and began to feel integrated with staff and the shop atmosphere. On the second day, I began late and ended late- working to aid preparations for the event, which was about celebrating Kato-san’s work and promoting Kitchen provisions as a whole. I did a number of jobs like cleaning plates and carrying different things up and down the stairs, specifically jobs that didn't take skill so that everybody else could focus on tasks that needed their expertise, like dealing with knives.

The event was a huge success and I am very happy to have been a part of preparations! All there were knife enthusiasts and it was magical to see everybody so focused on knives and enjoying the atmosphere, although I have to say the food was one of my favourite parts. 

This leads me to something I realised over my time at Kitchen Provisions, the fact that employees are so passionate about what they do and truly love knives as well as different aspects of Kitchen Provisions. I could always see the care and consideration that they put into their duties as well as just how far their knowledge stretches in specific fields, especially knives! Another thing I realised throughout my ten days was that the care and kindness wasn't only applied to work but also caring for me, the atmosphere in every shop was relaxing and comfortable with the staff making sure I was okay, showing me lots of kindness and creating fond memories of my time here alongside them at work! 

What might be one of my favourite things that I have learnt at my time at Kitchen Provisions is knife sharpening. I am so glad to have learnt this new skill and am very excited to hone it so that I can help family and friends as well as hopefully make use of it if I have the chance to return to this group of hard working, kind people at Kitchen Provisions! 

Overall, I have had a wonderful time here; coming to grips with the unknown side of a shop, learning a great deal about knives and smaller businesses, and getting to know some lovely people who have shown me nothing but hospitality and kindness. Truly, I am extremely thankful to have had the opportunity to experience working at such a nice shop! 

A huge thank you to Helen and Tom who let me join them, got me started and portrayed their kind nature to me. Also a huge thank you to all the staff who have shown me such kindness and treated me so well."


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