Although I can add any handle material you specify to your custom made knife, (see the handle above made from mammoth molar), this page shows the materials I commonly use.
I stabilise the wood if it has an open grain character to protect it from moisture. However, some woods - african blackwood, pink ivory - are so tight grained they don’t need it.
Some of my hand made knives use synthetic materials; this makes the knife dishwasher safe.
Yew (Taxus bachata)
A highly figured timber native to Britain and one of our slowest growing trees.
Sometimes there are also darker areas and purple colours can appear. The lighter colour is sapwood although it’s density is similar to the heartwood which is the honey coloured part.
Betula pendula var. carelica
This strikingly patterned wood comes from a variant of our silver birch that grows in Scandinavia and the Baltic countries.
It is traditionally used in the puukko and other Nordic style knives, however, I use it on all designs of my knives
The beautiful colour and figure of this wood is featured on all the greatest shot gun stocks and looks fantastic on your bespoke knife too; especially when an african blackwood bolster is added.
This beautiful wood comes from a tree that only grows in the Sonoran Desert of Mexico, Arizona and California in the USA. It is very slow growing and therefore extremely dense. This makes it a great choice for fine hand made knives.
A dense and waxy wood from trees that grow in the southern African continent.
I sometimes include the sapwood which is creamy white and provides a great contrast
A beautiful and very dense wood from South Africa. Historically only Zulu royalty were allowed to utilise this wood.
Now felling is very carefully controlled and permits are extremely limited.
Other Natural Materials
Red Stag Antler
All my red stag antler is naturally shed from wild animals from the highlands of Scotland.
It gives a beautiful texture to a knife handle that is warm to the touch.