I managed the first 40 years of my stalking and field sports with cheap, serviceable, off the shelf knives, from makers like Mora and Opinel. I've actually got a wee Opinel that I've had for nearly 20 years already and though it's been chewed by various pups and the blade is wearing down I still always make sure it's in my pocket before I set off out with a gun or even into the garden. I keep it scalpel sharp and I've long since lost count of the number of animals it has sent toward our table, and mushrooms and veg from the garden and even the occasional flower for the missus------ No cost too small.
However: They say confession is good for the soul. So, I confess. I recently bought my first custom made knife. It didn't cost a fortune but it did cost £175... which will buy an awful lot of Moras and Opinels. I have learned something in the process. The new knife is made of fine Bohler steel, holds a fantastic edge and the handle fits my hand like nothing I've ever owned or used before, that much is good, but the surprise is; it just plain pleases me. In the past knives were either poor and got passed along or good enough and just got used. Now I find actual pleasure in ownership and use. Is this normal?
ps. The maker has asked me not to name him on here. Not quite sure why, but I will honour his wish. Frankly, this isn't about makes it's about asking why people buy custom made stuff.