A Kestrel Knife

I’ve been extremely busy these last few months, that is, I was busy when I had the spoons and the strength to do anything meaningful at all. Knifemaking has progressed at a snail’s pace, which those who read the knife blogge will know. But I did manage to finish dressing up two more blades from my first overabladeance and today I sharpened them and I started to take pictures. And I started with the smaller of the two.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

I tried my hand at embossing the sheath with a picture of a kestrel, based on one of my own photographs. I do not think I have done a spectacular job, but I showed it to a few people IRL who seemed to like it. Although some thought the kestrel was an eagle. But I think that is an indictment of their knowledge of birds and not of my leather carving ability. Though honestly, I had trouble getting into the mindset needed to work, I am barely keeping depression from eating my brain.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

The blade is an old design that I have shown here multiple times. Nothing new about that, but I tried some new materials for the handle and I think they show great promise for future projects.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.


© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

I used strongly decomposed (spalted) wood and this time, I submerged the wood in wood dye first and then I stabilized it with a resin that cures at 80°C. And it worked very well. The dye soaked primarily into the more decomposed parts and that created an additional marbling effect to the one created by the fungus itself. The white-ish inserts are not bone this time, but also resin-stabilized material – birch polypore, Fomitopsis betulina. It looks to be very promising material, I will write about it more when making my next project with it. And the chocolate brown inserts are also resin stabilized conk – tinder fungus, Fomes fomentarius. That also looks like a promising material for bolsters, inserts, etc.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

And to cap it off, at the end of the tang is a nut shaped like a heraldic rose blossom.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

Sometime this week I will also make pictures of the second knife. That one is significantly bigger.


  1. lochaber says

    nice work, and neat idea with the resin-impregnated materials. I imagine you could use about anything, if you can properly soak it in appropriate resin.

  2. Jazzlet says

    Ooh I love the resin soaked fungi and spalted wood, you really do have brilliant ideas. Then you turn them into beautiful work.

  3. says

    @GAS, that would be swell if it were so. Unfortunately, it isn’t. The highest price I ever got for a knife was for the one with a roe deer on the sheath, and that was for an equivalent of approx 400 USD. And that was the only result of an advertising campaign that cost me 500 USD, so I came out with a net loss and I don’t have the knife. I stopped paying for advertising after that because it was a complete waste of money since I am not re-selling cheap merch made by slave labor in Asia and thus I can’t lower the prices and compensate that with bulk. I’d rather keep the knives than sell them at a loss to people who would not value them because they got them on the cheap. I am avoiding offloading my problems on other people but the truth of the matter is that I am moderately good at making knives, but I suck at selling them. I will offer this one for approx 400 USD on my webshoppe and I do not expect it to be sold anytime soon.

    @lochaber, Jazzlet I do think that many things would work if stabilized in resin and I have a few more material ideas to fool around with. I have other types of polypores to try out and some other plant-based materials too. What I don’t have is the time and strength to try out all the ideas that I have.

    @kestrel, thank you, I am glad you like it.

  4. Tethys says

    That is a very fine looking knife. It exudes quality.
    The handle and inserts came out beautifully, especially the white polypore. It almost looks iridescent like mother of pearl.

  5. says

    @Tethys, I was wondering what it reminds me of. It does vaguely resemble the opalescence of mother of pearl, although it is not shiny and at it is at first glance definitively organic.

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