Updated: May 23, 2019
I have been thinking about what I wanted my first blog to be about for a while now and finally decided to write about how I came about making knives. I am a 4th generation craftsman (maybe more) and have always worked with my hands. As a lifetime sportsman, knives were always seen solely as tools. Knife making is not something that I have always wanted to do, I really didn't even know this whole knife making world existed until about 10 years ago! That was until I received my first handmade custom knife. I was a fresh graduate from East Carolina University in 2008 with a degree in Construction management (terrible timing with the great recession) and as a gift, my Uncle Larry gave me a custom knife.
The knife wasn't anything wildly exotic but the fact that someone had made that knife by hand fascinated me. It was the first time I viewed knives as an artistic expression and not just a tool. Being a craftsman myself, I was determined to make my own to use on my outdoor expeditions.
Being a jack-of-all-trades and master of none, I started researching exactly what it took to handcraft a knife. The more I researched the subject the more I was determined this was something I had to try myself. I obtained some of the most basic tools required to give it a shot and set up shop in the garage. My knife making addiction began, and has continued since.
I made my first knife in 2014 and called it the Thicket Buster. I was proud of the final product and naturally started showing it off. This led to orders from family and friends and the rest is history. In the beginning I took my time to reach the highest quality and performance I could provide in a tool, as well as maintaining flowing lines and beautiful aesthetics. This philosophy still holds true today as I strive to make each knife better than the last. I am always learning and researching the craft, and I give full attention to performance and quality so that I can maintain the Screech Owl Standard I have set!
Once I started gaining a demand for the knives my wife and I decided we would try to make a side business out of it. Since I could only work on these at night after work as a chimney sweep, we thought the name Screech Owl Knives would fit the bill for the fact that I was out in the garage making knives with the surrounding owls keeping me company hooting all night. In the meantime, I took a leap on a new job that fell through within a couple of months. This is the point when I made the decision to go full time as my demand was still growing. I have been blessed to be able to continue to do something that I love alongside my family. This year will mark my 5th year of knife making, 4 of those being full time.
Looking back on the journey so far I have to thank my Uncle because if it wasn't for him that spark wouldn't have went been lit, and I would not know that this was all even possible. Now the first knife I ever made....................
Thanks for listening everyone!
Daniel Lee Pica