When people ask if it is hard to make a knife, I think of an older gentleman I met in Sweden. He was whittling a piece of wood into a Dalecarlian horse. I asked him if it was hard to make a horse. He gave me a wry smile and said, “No son it is not hard. You just have to cut away what’s not the horse.”
I started knife-making three years ago. A friend, who had been in the knife-making business for many years, introduced me to John Gray (@johngrayknives). John, a kind and patient man, became my teacher, allowing me to look over his shoulder at his grinding technique.
While working on my first grinds at John’s shop, I met Sebastijen Berenji (Borkablades). I am truly blessed to have had mentors like Sebastijen and John. But I am doubly blessed to call them my friends and brothers.
As with any craft, the learning process was, at times, frustrating and tedious. There were so many media that spoke to me. Steel/handle material and hardware, as well as sheath making, come in numerous varieties. But over the days, weeks, and months of working with people like John and Sebastijen, I fine-tuned my technique and created my style.
Advancing and perfecting that style is the “true North” of my knife-making journey. I strive to make knives that are not just recognizable, but are also known for their quality and no-nonsense precision, I want people to know there is no such thing as “almost right” with Achterknives.
My dedication to creating durable, smartly designed handcrafted products is a continuation on a path that was started many years ago by my grandfather. He was a blacksmith, an artisan. When I was a child, he would bring me to his shop and show me the magnificent machines used in his trade. But what I remember most is the pride that my grandfather took in the iron art he created.
I believe in the value of making something by hand, something that you put your heart and soul into, something that serves someone through their years, and maybe, is handed down to the next generation.
We back every product we make. But Achterknives are not, and never will be, for everyone.
The knives we make are for the people who appreciate our design philosophy and the handwork that goes into every product we make. They are for people who believe in the old school values of your word is your bond, your handshake is an agreement, and who stand for the national anthem to thank the service men and women who protect our freedom.
”The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” is an old saying but is still true.