When it comes to pocket knives and EDC gear, we’ve all heard of the classics. Everyone should already have a Swiss Army or Leatherman in their arsenal. They’re great knives, but the best pocket knife brands tend to fly under the radar. If you’re looking to update your EDC essentials, we put together this list of pocket knife brands for you. These are the independents. The creatives. The pocket knife producers that don’t get enough credit. These are 13 of the best pocket knife brands on the market.


Dalibor Bergam Knives

If you spend any amount of time in the Instagram #customknives channel you’re bound to come across at least one Dalibor Bergam Knife. Dalibor Bergam is a 34-year-old Croatian that’s been making knives that no one can keep in stock since 2012. His construction and tools have been upgraded over the years, but his signature multi-color and patterned blades have remained the same. Consider this one-man shop the bladed tool equivalent of the Pagani group—incredibly expensive, incredibly well-made and incredibly ridiculous. At the moment, Bergam isn’t taking any custom orders but be sure to give him a follow on Instagram for future updates. Link



Opinel is nearly a household name at this point. And if they’re not, they should be. The French brand has made an artform of inexpensive, practical blades for everyday use. There’s a timeless beauty to the wooden Opinel handle. And they prove their worth with versatile constructions. While most of Opinel’s camping knives feature a standard blade, you can find variations for oyster shucking or serrated blades. One of our favorites has a corkscrew built into the side. Opinel is easily one of the best pocket knife brands for campers and food enthusiasts. Link


Case Knives

W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Company is an American manufacturer of premium, hand-crafted knives that have been passed down for generations. More importantly, Case makes one helluva bad ass folder. Long and slim. Multi-bladed or multi-tooled like a Swiss Army alternative. With or without assisted opening. Every Case XX pocket knife is built to last and designed to look good in pocket. Link


Benchmade Knife Company

Benchmade Knife Company has a rich history dating back over three decades, which is why they’re one of the great pocket knife brands on this list that you might have already heard of. What started as a desire to replace the cheap butterfly knives on the market has evolved into one of the most respected pocket knife brands. Whether you’re looking for something purpose-built for the outdoors, the everyday, the rescue, the tactical, the survival or the hunting, Benchmade Knife Company has a well-built, unique knife for you. Link



Spyderco has been making quality pocket knives since the 70s and earned a reputation as one of the best producers on the market. No EDC setup is complete without at least one Spyderco knife in the lineup. We’re particularly fond of the Delica or Byrd. This legacy pocket knife brand is known for its signature thumbhole opening mechanism which allows you to open the blade with just one hand. And, despite their growth in popularity, Spyderco has never abandoned the principles and quality materials in its products. Link


Burnside Knives

Founded by the former Adidas Originals designer Rick Maderis and his wife Lyndsay, Burnside Knives creates “essential tools for outdoor enthusiasts and working professionals like yourself.” What that means to you is high-quality, high-performance knives made with D2 and AUS-8 stainless steels, titanium pieces, and a few different unique designs that are familiar but altogether different. Link



Gerber’s main selling point is that they offer affordable, entry-level, tactical pocket knives. What many enthusiasts overlook is the knives have the quality and endurance of knives priced much higher. They might not be as flashy or exciting as some of the other options on this list but they’re just as solid. At Gerber, you’ll find a variety of fixed and folding knives with a suite of blade options. When it comes to their pocket knives, Gerber makes blades that are built to withstand the great outdoors. So, if you’re looking for a new camping knife, consider Gerber. Link


Ontario Knife Company (OKC)

What started as a company built on manufacturing with a waterpower-run grindstone and sales via pushcart in the late 1800s has evolved into this, the Ontario Knife Company. OKC makes fixed blades, tools, cutlery, tactical and folding pocket knives that are robust, overbuilt, and designed to tackle everything you could possibly throw at them. Whether you’re looking for an aluminum handle with rubberized grip in dark black camo, or an Italian liner-lock with a safety green handle, OKC is one of the good pocket knife brands. Link


James Brand

There’s a good chance you already know this pocket knife brand. The James Brand has quickly become one of the most popular pocket knife brands around. Thanks to sleek designs, modern aesthetics, and solid price points, many pocket knife enthusiasts have turned to James Brand. And for good reason. The pocket knife manufacturers employ unique knife blades like the Wharncliffe or even Damascus knives for unique, stunning pieces of gear. Plus, they’ll often collaborate with artists for one-off creations that carry the James Brand quality guarantee. Add a touch of class to your collection with James Brand. Link


Quiet Carry

Quiet Carry Pocket Knives are based on the same principles of durability, solid construction and refined aesthetics that make all their EDC tools so functional and approachable. When it comes to their knives, they excel because of their shorter blade lengths, lightweight construction, titanium frames and multiple finish options. Link


Serge Knives

Serge Pachenko is one man that strives to make unique, interesting knives that not only look good but are completely usable in everyday carry. While we certainly enjoy his unique Dog Tag and Coin Tag iterations of his designs, we’re particularly fond of his Bean Tanto designs. With a total length of 5″—2″ of which is blade—the antiqued copper and titanium setup utilizes a ball detent system to hold the blade open while also creating a pocket, non-locking folder that’s gorgeous and easy to carry. Link



While Columbia River Knife & Tool a.k.a. CRKT might be the most popular option on this list, you still ought to know them. The famed pocket knife brand has been in operation for over 20 years producing a bevy of quality blades built for the outdoors. Unique blade shapes, handle constructions, and knife capabilities combine at CRKT for an unmistakable product. Whether you need an everyday pocket knife for opening packages or a highly specialized blade, CRKT has you covered. Link


Jalomo Handmade Knives

Eagle Knights / Pepe Jalomo / Jalomo Handmade Knives are all the monikers that the three decades plus with two and a half decades of SWAT experience knifemaker goes by. Whether you’re looking for a unique folder or a ferrier knife, you can bet your bottom dollar that Pepe Jalomo can create something functional, durable and unique that’s unlike anything else in your collection. You’re going to have to contact him directly via e-mail for your order, but his work is well worth the wait. Link

Want to read more about the best pocket knives? Click here for Cool Material’s Guide to Pocket Knives.


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