Get ready to fill in your crisp, new calendar: 2016 brings a slew of knife shows to mark down. Knife shows are the life blood of the cutlery industry. At the year’s biggest knife shows, partnerships are forged, new knives are announced, trends are born – or die – and makers, production companies, and collectors all gather together to share the latest and greatest designs and inventions. The following list is not nearly comprehensive – there are hundreds of other local shows and knife events – but here are some of the biggest and most talked-about shows to come in 2016.
SHOT Show | January 19 – 22 | Las Vegas, NV
Closed to the public – SHOT is where the major production knife brands unveil the bulk of the year’s new products. The show occupies a premium place on the calendar, easily making it the most important knife show to knife enthusiasts.
IWA Outdoor Classics | March 4 – 7 | Nuremberg, Germany
One of the largest industry shows outside the United States, the IWA encompasses hunting, shooting sports, and outdoor equipment manufacturers.
East Coast Custom Knife Show | March 11 – 13 | Jersey City, NJ
A popular destination for custom knifemakers, the ECCKS pulls in makers from all over the world.
Oregon Knife Show | April 9 – 10 | Eugene, OR
The Oregon Knife showcases custom and production knives, especially traditionals. 2016 will be their 41st annual show.
Blade Show | June 3 – 5 | Atlanta, GA
A small fraction of the size of SHOT Show, Blade still remains the hugest of the big custom knife shows. The event, is an annual pilgrimage of custom knife collectors to Atlanta. Custom knife makers and custom knife collectors from all over the world will be in Atlanta in early June. It’s worth noting that 2016 marks the 35th Anniversary of the Blade Show.
The Gathering | September 1 – 3 | Las Vegas, NV
Organized by the tightly-knit members of the Usual Suspect Network, The Gathering brings together major and novice knifemakers with collectors and fans.
International Custom Cutlery Exposition | 2016 dates not yet confirmed; 2015 ran from September 18 – 20 | Kansas City, MO
The Knifemakers’ Guild and the American Bladesmith Society work together every year to showcase custom knives of all kinds, but especially forged knives.
California Custom Knife Show | October 22 – 23 | Garden Grove, CA
Sponsored by Plaza Cutlery, the CCKS began in 1981 and has continued to showcase custom high-end knives every year.
New York Custom Knife Show | 2016 dates not yet confirmed; 2015 ran from November 20 – 22 | Jersey City, NJ
Originally held in New York City, the NYCKS recently moved to Jersey City to avoid dealing with highly restrictive NYC knife laws.
Knife featured in image: Tim Britton T-10 Mongoose Flipper