The "Topknife" project

Knifemaking training in Thiers

The cutlery training in Thiers, a small town nestled in the heart of the Auvergne mountains, is a rich story deeply rooted in French artisanal traditions. Renowned for its centuries-old expertise in knife making, Thiers has become over the years a true cradle of cutlery craftsmanship.

The cutlery training in Thiers is built upon an inheritance passed down through generations, where every gesture, every technique is imbued with the expertise and dedication of master cutlers. This exceptional savoir-faire is preserved and enriched through specialized training, blending tradition with innovation.

Aspiring cutlers who come to train in Thiers discover a world where precision and meticulousness are paramount. They are immersed in an environment where passion for the craft is transmitted like a precious legacy. The instructors, true custodians of knowledge, teach apprentices the ancestral techniques of forging, tempering, sharpening, and assembly, while integrating modern technologies to meet contemporary demands.

The cutlery training in Thiers goes beyond just acquiring technical skills. It also values creativity, innovation, and respect for materials. Apprentices are encouraged to express their artistic talent, explore new forms, and push the boundaries of tradition to create unique and original pieces.

Beyond learning manufacturing techniques, the cutlery training in Thiers instills in future artisans the values ​​of quality, authenticity, and professional ethics. These values ​​are at the heart of Thiers' cutlery identity and ensure the international renown of Thiers knives.

In summary, the cutlery training in Thiers is more than just technical education. It is an initiatory journey into a millennia-old tradition, where every hammer blow, every polish, every precise movement contributes to perpetuating the excellence of French cutlery craftsmanship. Thiers remains, even today, a beacon in the world of cutlery, proudly upholding the colors and reputation of unparalleled craftsmanship.

Passing on our know-how

Apprenticing at Fontenille Pataud offers a profound immersion into the essence of French cutlery mastery. Nestled in the idyllic village of Thiers, Fontenille Pataud has honed its craft for over a century, blending time-honored techniques with modern ingenuity.

knife maker apprentice

At Fontenille Pataud, apprenticeship is a journey guided by seasoned artisans who possess a wealth of generational wisdom. Under their tutelage, apprentices delve into the intricate art of knife-making, from discerning the choicest materials to mastering the nuances of forging, shaping, and refining.

The apprenticeship experience at Fontenille Pataud emphasizes hands-on learning, empowering apprentices to refine their skills through direct practice. Whether it entails honing blade edges to surgical precision or meticulously crafting handles from luxurious woods, apprentices are encouraged to immerse themselves fully in every facet of the craft.

Beyond technical proficiency, apprentices at Fontenille Pataud develop a profound appreciation for the artistry and heritage embedded within each knife they help create. They learn to honor the rich traditions that have shaped French cutlery, while also embracing opportunities for innovation and artistic expression.

Moreover, apprentices at Fontenille Pataud are not mere students; they are embraced as integral members of a close-knit community united by a shared passion for preserving and advancing the art of knife-making. Through collaboration and communal learning, apprentices forge enduring bonds with fellow artisans, fostering an environment of mutual support and growth.

knife maker contest Fontenille Pataud

In essence, apprenticeship at Fontenille Pataud transcends mere vocational training; it is a transformative odyssey that instills a profound sense of pride and craftsmanship. As apprentices refine their skills and contribute to Fontenille Pataud's legacy of excellence, they become custodians of a tradition that continues to define the pinnacle of French cutlery craftsmanship.

What about Topknife?

The large majority of our team members are former Fontenille Pataud apprentices who have stayed on to pursue their passion. Having arrived in our home town of Thiers to learn this age-old trade, a true passion for knives and cutlery lies behind each of our craftsmen.

To unleash and highlight this passion, we created the Topknife project in 2022. A veritable in-house cutlery competition, each member of our team aims to bring out all their talent and creativity in order to design a knife that will become the future best-seller in our range.

The result: Pradel and London are 100% Topknife products. These knives have been imagined by our team members and are now available on our website with a success that exceeds all our expectations.

The Topknife project is now firmly anchored in our DNA, and thanks to this internal competition we will continue to offer you ever more new products, but above all to highlight the passion of our knifemakers.

sailor's knife London by Fontenille Pataud

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Lifetime Guarentee

The quality of our manufacturing enables us to give you a lifetime manufacturer's guarantee.


We shipped our knives worldwide since 1999.

100% Handmade in France

Fontenille Pataud was founded in 1929 and quickly became recognized as a manufacturer of high-end knives.