Aside from the quality of our blades, the joy of a Savernake knife is in customising every aspect to suit your own style preference.
From traditional woods and colourful stripes, to contemporary materials such as Richlite, Corian or Durat – and not forgetting the infinite design options offered by our G.F Smith paper range – we have selected and tested every single material primarily for its longevity and durability.
Explore our materials in more depth here.
We’ve tested almost every wood you can think of for our handles and the ones offered are selected for their longevity and beauty. You’re also welcome to supply a favourite piece of wood if you prefer.
Made from layers of wood, sandwiched together with resin, our striped handles range from the bold hues of our Random Stripes to the subtle tones of our Scandi and wear beautifully over time.
Modern materials such as Richlite, Corian and Durat offer an almost infinite array of colours together with exceptional durability and first class sustainability credentials.
G . F Smith Paper
Our collaboration with G.F Smith Paper realises one of our finest dreams – infinite customisation. Whether layered alone or with wood veneer, our G.F Smith handles are a sight to behold.
The liner sits between the visible steel part of the handle, and the handle material itself. As well as providing a good surface for bonding, it also provides a great opportunity for a flash of contrasting or complimentary colour to your handle.
Choose from our standard range of liner colours or get in touch if you’d like a specific shade or multiple liner colour option.
Last but by no means least, is the steel we use for our blades.
After extensive research and hours of testing, we now almost exclusively use Swedish Sandvik 14c28n, although on occasion we use RWL 34 powdered metallurgical steel and other exotics. For prototypes we use 420C, the steel used by most other knife manufacturers for their final product.
We chose Sandvik for a variety of reasons – not only is it a stainless steel with excellent strength properties, Sweden also has stated ambitions to remain at the forefront of technological and innovative development in a transformation to a sustainable society.
We are firm believers in the merit of buying once but buying the best you can afford – not only does a good knife stand the test of time but it’s also considerably better for the environment to buy products that are built to last. So using steel with strong sustainability credentials was an important choice for us.
In tests by CATRA (the Cutlery and Allied Trades Research Association) Savernake blades scored in the top 2.5% of knives tested and were rated ‘Excellent’ for both initial sharpness and durability.
Commissioning a bespoke knife
If you would prefer us to use a different steel for your bespoke knife project, we’re very happy to source alternatives for you.
Although not particularly our cup of tea, it is possible to get (at great expense) Damascus-pattern stainless steel, so that’s always an option if you like that sort of thing but would like to continue to use corrosion-resistant steel.
A rather better option might be Japanese layered steel.
We resolutely refuse to make knives using carbon steel, For us, choosing a metal type that corrodes as a knife blade makes little sense. Some will say that the ‘patina’ (i.e. rust) that invariably develops on a carbon blade tells a story, but we see this as an attempt to turn a bug into a feature. Also any knife that turns black when cutting onions – surely the mainstay of a kitchen knife – is of dubious utility.
We’ve tested almost every wood you can think of for our handles, and continue to do so. We keep a small, rotating stock of all of the woods shown here. However, if there’s another you would like, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Just like all of our materials, these natural woods are selected primarily for their longevity. They also happen to look beautiful.
Browse our selection of woods
We use East Indian Satinwood, the original satinwood, known for its smooth texture, subtle figuring and the ability to develop a deep lustre.
A greatly under-appreciated wood, Mopane is arguably our favourite. Incredibly hard and durable, its subtle figuring works beautifully at the scale of a knife handle.
The only English wood in our collection, walnut requires a lot of oiling and a bit more care than tropical hardwoods. This is offset by the subtle gradations in colour and tapping in to an English wood-working heritage stretching back centuries.
One of Mozambique’s finest, Chacate Preto has a gorgeous contrast between the darker and lighter grains. Very dense and durable, it rewards continual use.
A very dense hardwood, and one that requires time and patience to work successfully. Bold and lively, Bubinga works splendidly with more muted liner colours.
Our Bocote comes from Mexico, and is the most surprising and varied of our woods. No two blocks are ever the same, and with care and dedication the contrasting colours can be made to startle.
The original ebony before Ebony, African Blackwood is our densest wood and one that takes to our house blend of oils like a duck to water.
Funk up your kitchen with our colourful striped wood composites – multiple layers of wood stabilised in resin to create a highly durable, playful handle material. Choose from rainbow brights to muted Scandi shades, vibrant pinks to bold orange or mix it up with all the colours.
Browse our selection of stripes
A random selection of muted brights, our striped handle material wears beautifully over time. It will benefit from an occasional light application of finishing oil, a small sample of which is supplied with your knife.
Bold orange is layered with graphite and silver grey in our Tiger Stripes handle. Thin layers of wood are stabilised with resin to create a durable handle that will age beautifully over time.
Subtle pale tones of gold, beige and silver are offset with a darker graphite to create a distinctive yet discreet handle material. An occasional reapplication of finishing oil will ensure a lifetime of use.
No shrinking violet, our Action Stripes shrieks extrovert and look at me! The magenta pink is layered with dark silvery grey for a handle that will stand out in even the most colourful kitchen.
The classic rainbow is replicated here in technicolour glory, with layers of red, orange, yellow, green and blue wood sandwiched together to create a stunning handle, sure to brighten up even the most sombre of kitchens.
Our modern materials such as Richlite, Corian and Durat offer an almost infinite array of colours together with exceptional durability and first class sustainability credentials. We showcase a small selection of our favourite material colours here – but if you’re hankering after a specific hue please get in touch to discuss.
Browse our selection of contemporary materials
We love Richlite. Made from resin-stabilised layers of paper, it comes in various colour ways. Besides making beautiful handles, we also use it for many of our accessories, including our magnetic lock-in sheaths and chopping boards. Choose a contrasting liner for a pop of colour against the black.
Red Richlite comes alive when used for our handles. Routing and shaping the material reveals layers to create a stunning finish. Highly durable and equally at home in a domestic or commercial environment.
Our blue Richlite takes on the appearance of semi precious Lapis Lazuli when used for our handles, with each layer revealed as the material is shaped. Subtle yet rich – absolutely gorgeous.
Made from recycled post-industrial waste, Durat is itself recyclable making it one of the most sustainable materials we offer. In white it makes a bold, monochromatic statement, perfect for a modern kitchen setting.
Banishing the notion of boring, our playful emerald Durat is the epitome of green material, ideal for eco warriors and the Wizard of Oz alike. Highly durable and a fantastic option for commercial use.
Lavender, lilac or mauve, this purple hued beauty will add a splash of colour to even the most sombre of kitchens. Made from post industrial recycled waste, Durat is a superb option for culinary champions of sustainability.
Reminiscent of the Milky Way on a moonlit night, Astro Corian is stunningly tactile and one of the most hardwearing materials available. Perfect for hot-handed chefs or anyone who prefers a slightly heavier knife, Corian stays cool to the touch and feels super smooth in the hand.
Recalling a midnight sky viewed by the light of a desert campfire, our Aspen Staron is quite simply a stunning choice for a handle. A long-lasting composite material, keep things subtle by pairing it with a white liner – classic with a twist.
Imperial Yellow Corian
Not one for shrinking violets, our Imperial Yellow Corian promised to inject a ray of sunshine into even the darkest of kitchens. An incredibly hardwearing, cool to the touch material, Corian makes a striking choice for bold chefs looking for a statement handle.
Slightly translucent yet incredibly durable, our Onyx Corian would compliment a granite or marble-topped kitchen beautifully. Pair with a black liner for a classic, monochrome look or choose colour for a handle with wow factor.
G . F Smith Colorplan
Our latest offering is a special one. We use the wonderful paper from G . F Smith’s Colorplan range to offer infinite handle designs. Pick a selection of colours and tell us how you’d like it to look and we’ll put it through our special stabilising process to create a robust and visually stunning handle for you.