I've mentioned before that I hope to go to France in April with my father for the 90th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. I've long wanted to go to France and Flanders with my dad, and visit the places where my grandfather fought during the Great War. The 90th anniversary presents a good opportunity for a visit, and dad isn't getting any younger (while I am) so who knows how many more opportunities will present themselves while health isn't an issue.
My grandfather fought with the 16th Canadian Scottish, and I thought to honour him that I'd get a kilt in his Regimental tartan (officially it was the Lennox, but only the pipers wore that, the men wore the MacKenzie Modern). When I had visiters from Scotland this summer I took the opportunity to quiz them on Highland wear, and part of the advice they gave me was to pay particular attention to the accessories, to make it my own, and make it quality.
One of the items that forms part of Highland Dress is the Sgian Dubh (pronounced skeen doo). It literally means black knife in Gaelic and is a knife that tucks into the hose. When I thought about it I thought "what would be better than a Sgian Dubh with a carved handle from the Arctic". Dave, one of the qayaqers here thought that the ivory would be too light for the knife, and sent me some 6000 year old bog oak from Speyside to use as the pommel and add a little darkness to the knife.
One of the best carvers in Arctic Bay, Adrian Arnamaumayuq, got married about three weeks back, and in exchange for baking his wedding cake, he agreed to carve me two handles for Sgian Dubhs. One Sgian Dubh is for my brother-in-law (Leah's sister Eunice's husband Ian) who hails from Scotland, and the other is mine.
Tonight he brought over the first one, Ian's, and here are the pictures. The blade isn't fitted into the handle yet, hence the gap.