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About the Custom Etchings


Custom etchings by Francine are one-of-a-kind, hand drawn, signed original artwork on knife blades made for the most discriminating clientele. Her art creates a compelling world that you will want to return to again and again.

Francine's custom etching technique has evolved over more than 40 years from rather simple designs to finely detailed, painstakingly rendered works of art that can take as long as 200 or more hours for a larger knife. She uses several fine point, needle tipped drawing tools and burnishers to carve her design into the beeswax and asphaltum ground that covers the surface of the knife blade. When the work is completed, the blade is submerged into an acid bath which etches away the exposed steel, but not the areas covered by the resist. The process produces a pattern that is permanently etched into the steel. This centuries-old technique is the same one used to etch zinc and copper plates for printing "etchings" on fine paper.

After an eight year hiatus from engaging new orders, Francine is once again accepting commissions for custom work. Since the custom etchings at this time are done solely on a commission basis, the subject matter is usually determined by the client. Although Francine can offer virtually any motif you may desire, most of her work is of wildlife.

Francine will work closely with you to ensure that the completed work will be precisely what you desire. The first step is to collaborate with you in honing the ideas that will comprise the elements of the work. Next, a detailed pencil drawing is made for your approval. Once you have approved the design, she begins her long journey in the wax. When the knife is ready to be put into the acid, a computer scan of the design in the wax is made and sent to you for a final okay.

Prices for fully detailed, full blade etchings prices start at $1,500.00 for a 3" Paring Knife or a 2" Dropped Edge Utility Knife and go to $10,000.00 for a 10" Chef's Knife. Simpler renderings are available.

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