For his entire life, Matthew Paul, owner of MP Knives, has had a passion for creating and fixing things. As a young boy, he would tinker with small engines and anything mechanical in nature. When he was twelve, he started his own lawn care business by purchasing a small broken push mower and fixing it himself. Summers spent behind that mower helped develop a passion for working hard and whet his taste for running a business.
In high school, Matt attended Orange-Ulster BOCES Career and Technical Education Center for Automotive Technology. He started working at a Chevrolet dealer that summer, as a Class-C mechanic, before adding welding, operating tow trucks and gaining more certifications as a mechanic in the next decade. He excelled in this career path and climbed to the top, in a short period of time.
However, things changed in 2011 on a camping trip with friends from BushcraftUSA.com when he nearly cut off his left hand with an axe while topping a tree. Thanks to quick thinking, and his good friend Jim, tragedy was circumvented and Matt made it to the hospital in time. Yet without health insurance, he was on his own to deal with the situation. The kind and caring friends at BushcraftUSA.com came together and held major fundraisers to help pay for the surgery to repair his wrist. These generous and loving acts will never be forgotten.
As fate would have it, shortly before the accident, Matt had begun making knives as a hobby. He was spending tremendous amounts of time outside hiking, camping, fishing, and hunting, and wanted a quality knife to use. One thing led to another, and he started making knives for friends and family. After the accident, he decided to quit his job to do what he loved; making things-specifically knives and tools.
Matthew rented a small closet of a shop, with no windows and began to learn the intricacies of metal working. With time and hard work, he got better and better at his craft. Around 2013 he moved into a larger shop and slowly built an arsenal of tools, including a power hammer based on diagrams from Clay Spencer and Ray Clontz’s booklet.
Since then, Matt has taught knife forging classes at Hudson River Ironworks, attended week long forging class by Uri Hoffie, and strives to expand his teaching and learning opportunities whenever possible.
He currently works full-time in his shop in Florida, NY and takes custom knife orders and sells pre-made knives, axes and other custom forged tools. His work is available through BadgerClaw Leatherworks in SanAntonio TX, as well as JT Knives in Port Jervis NY. Most recently, his axe work can be seen in Edible Hudson Valley and Edible Westchester.
Visit the contact page to speak to Matt about making your special project a reality! Make sure to visit the Blog section for useful information about the tools, how to use them, and the best way to care for them!