Introducing the Opinel Knife: A Symbol of Savoie’s Craftsmanship and Tradition

Introducing the Opinel Knife: A Symbol of Savoie’s Craftsmanship and Tradition

Posted by FindHomeAbroad on May 31, 2023 Blog Findhomeabroad 0


For over a century, the Opinel knife has been an iconic symbol of Savoie’s rich heritage and exquisite craftsmanship. Originating in the quaint village of Albiez-Montrond in 1890, the Opinel family’s legacy as skilled blacksmiths laid the foundation for this renowned pocket knife. With its folding blade design and commitment to quality, the Opinel knife has captured the hearts of both locals and enthusiasts worldwide. From its humble beginnings to the present day, this small yet mighty tool continues to embody the essence of Savoie’s traditional craftsmanship and the timeless artistry of the region.

  • The Opinel knife, world-famous and steeped in history, is proudly crafted in Savoie.
  • The story of Opinel begins in 1890 in the village of Albiez-Montrond, where Joseph Opinel, part of a long line of blacksmiths, created his first folding blade knife at the age of 18.
  • Over time, Opinel expanded its range with different series classified by size, and in 1911, Joseph Opinel received a gold medal at the International Alpine Exhibition in Turin.
  • The most significant innovation came in 1955 with the invention of the Virobloc system, adding a rotating and sliding ferrule to lock the unfolded blade for enhanced safety.
  • Despite a factory fire in 1926, Opinel continued to flourish, and today, the company is still family-owned and operates in Chambéry, at the heart of the Alps.
  • Opinel knives, renowned for their exceptional quality, have proudly represented the brand for over 130 years.

Opinel one day, Opinel always…

You have understood that Opinel is much more than just a brand, it is a symbol of success. Proof of this is that since 1985, the Opinel has been listed by the Victoria & Albert Museum in London among the hundred best drawn objects in the world, alongside the Porsche 911 or the Rolex watch .

To conclude we can affirm that since the creation of the first knife in 1905 until today Opinel has been able to establish itself, renew itself, reinvent itself and continue to contribute to the pride of the Savoyards, and even well beyond our mountains. …


In 1565, King Charles IX of France ordered that each master cutler affix an emblem to his products to guarantee their origin and quality. Joseph Opinel chose a Crowned Hand as his emblem.

This crowned hand represents the blessing hand of Saint John the Baptist appearing on the coat of arms of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne, the nearest town to Albiez-le-Vieux, the birthplace of the Opinel family. Joseph Opinel adds a crown to remind us that Savoy was a duchy.

Since then, all the blades of Opinel knives and tools have been hallmarked with La Main Couronne!

Unveiling the Legacy: Explore the Opinel Museum in Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne

If you’re passing through Saint Jean de Maurienne, don’t miss the opportunity to embark on a short getaway to discover the captivating history of the Opinel knife and the remarkable family behind its name. At the Opinel Museum, you can immerse yourself in the heritage of this famous Savoyard knife, while also exploring the extensive range of Opinel products. With free admission and open seven days a week during the summer months, the museum offers nearly 700 m² of dedicated space to showcase the story of this renowned blade.

To Each Their Perfect Opinel: A Brand for All Tastes

Opinel has established itself as a beloved centerpiece for many Savoyards and beyond. The brand’s commitment to preserving the original craftsmanship is evident in its diverse range of products that cater to various preferences. Whether you prefer a classic Opinel for everyday kitchen tasks or an elegantly designed knife reserved for special occasions, Opinel offers options to suit every need. From kitchen and table knives to pocket knives and tools for DIY, sports, outdoor activities, and gardening, the collection is a testament to Opinel’s versatility.

The Trusted Companion: Opinel, the Hiker’s Best Friend

For hikers and outdoor enthusiasts, an Opinel knife is an essential companion. Whether nestled in your pocket or carried in your backpack, an Opinel knife proves its usefulness during picnic breaks along the trail. From slicing bread to enjoying a piece of cheese, an Opinel is the perfect tool for simple pleasures amidst nature’s beauty.

Souvenirs with Savoyard Charm: Opinel, a “Made in Savoie” Gift

Looking for a unique souvenir or gift from your memorable holiday in Savoie? Look no further than an Opinel product. In addition to the region’s renowned cheeses, an Opinel knife presents an original idea to commemorate your experience. Whether it’s a special mushroom Opinel for a mushroom-loving grandparent, an Opinel pruner for a gardening enthusiast, or a number 8 pocket knife adorned with the Savoy coat of arms as a budget-friendly yet meaningful present, Opinel offers a wide range of options that are sure to delight and avoid the fate of forgotten souvenirs.

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