Kitchen Paring Knife

I made this knife in the mid 1990’s, and have used it almost daily since then.  This knife is for paring fruit and vegetables, not the salmon colored goatskin leather in the background.  I pretty happy with the basic elements of my design: a short, narrow blade with the cutting edge aligned in the middle of a fairly chunky handle, aiding maneuverability.  I can’t remember what kind of wood I used for the handle, and it has darkened considerably, developing aesthetically pleasing wear, oxidation and staining. I’m glad this knife has held up to normal use, and sometimes abuse, like when I left it soaking in the sink overnight.

Pragmatically, handmade tools can be custom designed/made for specific or idiosyncratic uses. Spiritually, handmade tools are imbued with (for lack of a better term) an aura, reflecting the multitude of sometimes unconscious choices that the maker incorporates into the final product. So what is the does using a handmade tool—more specifically one that you have made yourself—add to this scenerio?

4 Replies to “Kitchen Paring Knife”

  1. pragmatically, a nice kitchen knife is pretty expensive, and a nice handmade (by me) kitchen knife is very inexpensive

  2. There’s something very special about objects that you make yourself. I made my own bone folder, which has always been my favourite to use despite how easy it is to go out and buy one from a store.

  3. Yes, I just wonder why sometimes. Even if it is designed or modified exactly as I *think* I want, once I start to use it I often change it again. Making your own tools is empowering, I guess.

  4. Reminds me of knives my great-grandmother had … local handy-man made them using old cross-cut saws or the leaf springs from Model T Fords.

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