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Lucas Burnley: maker of user-friendly EDC knives

Lucas Burnley is an American knife maker. He especially likes designing functional and easy-to-use EDC knives. Take his popular CRKT Squid collection, for instance. His designs are carefully thought through and made with passion. His 'Sketch' project is also noteworthy: he designed a knife every day for a year. If that isn't dedication, we don't know what is!

Lucas Burnley

Born14 July 1982
Place of residenceBend, Oregon, United States
Fulltime knife maker since2003
Cooperations withBöker, CRKT, MKM
Lucas Burnley

When you ask Lucas what attracted him to the knife world as a teenager, he'll tell you that it started during all the outdoor adventures he had with his father, supplemented with a good portion of action films. He started his working life as a bartender. In his spare time he enjoyed making knives, and since 2003 he has been a full-time custom knife maker and designer.

Modern EDC knives

Over the years, Lucas has experimented with a wide variety of styles. His goal is to artfully combine the classic models with modern materials and techniques, as he did with his Obake™ knife. Lucas believes knives are a personal expression of independence.

His striking knives combine clean, modern lines with tactical origins, a style that Lucas himself describes as 'post-tactical'. His designs for fixed knives and pocket knives are both playful and sophisticated, often incorporating subtle neo-Japanese elements. Above all, he believes that ease of use should not be at the expense of a knife's beauty. In addition to pocket knives and fixed knives, he also designs his own accessories.

The CRKT Squid by Lucas Burnley

Burnley Knives

As well as his collaborations with big names such as Böker, CRKT and MKM, Lucas Burnley also has his own company: Burnley Knives, also known as BRNLY. He founded this company in 2013 with his wife Maddie. In addition to knives, they also make tools, clothing and leather goods. Each Burnley Knives knife is handcrafted by Lucas in his workshop in Orleans, Massachusetts. For that reason, the production and availability of these rare knives is very limited and Lucas doesn't take orders. Furthermore, he never offers his custom knives via the internet. Lucas Burnley's handmade knives are mainly sold by raffle at various knife shows and occasionally in the Burnley Knives (private) Facebook community. Some of these knives are put into production by, for instance, CRKT. These knives are of course widely available, for example at Knivesandtools.

Lucas Burnley
Lucas Burnley at the Shot Show 2020

Cypop for tots

In 2013, Lucas started making a special edition of his popular 'Cypop'. Lucas calls this item a 'Netsuke'. A Netsuke has its origins as a Japanese button-shaped ornament that serves as a good luck charm. It is usually worn as a decoration on the sash of a kimono. The Cypop, however, can also be used as a bottle opener or even as brass knuckles. The latter is the reason that unfortunately we cannot sell the Cypop through our webshop.

'Part bottle opener, part pocket charm and challenge coin, the Cypop has been a flagship of the BRNLY Brand line since I began making it in 2013 as a way to connect with customers at shows. With a limited output of signature (custom) knives, I wanted to build something with a high level of design and craftsmanship that would be a little bit easier to get than my knives.'

Since 2013, Lucas has been making a special edition of the Cypop every year. This is then auctioned, with 100% of the proceeds going towards the purchase of toys for a local Toys for Tots organisation. The day after the raffle, the BRNLY team gets together to shop for toys.

Lucas Burnley knives at Knivesandtools

We have enjoyed Lucas' designs for many years. He constantly surprises us with cool new designs, yet his style is always clearly recognisable. That is the sign of a really good designer. We look forward to seeing what he comes up with in the future.

Here you can find all Lucas Burnley pocket knives, and here are all his fixed knives.