Indiana Knives.


As a student at Indiana University, Indiana Knives owner Eric Ziliak, 25, never thought he’d open his own business. Ziliak, a criminal justice major, graduated from the IU Police Academy in 2014 and worked as an IUPD officer for almost two years.

Indiana Knives owner, Eric Ziliak. Photos by Rodney Margison.

“I loved working for the IUPD and I had a lot of fun,” Ziliak says. “But after two years working night shift after night shift, I eventually realized that it wasn’t the type of work I wanted to be doing for the rest of my life.”

Ziliak has always been a pocketknife enthusiast, and it was during his hunt for a new knife that he had the idea to open his own shop. “One day I was looking for a gift for myself, and after a little research I found that there just weren’t that many good choices to buy from in the area,” he says. “I’d much prefer to hold the knife I want in my hands and try it out before I buy, so instead of ordering something online, I got the idea to start my own store.”

His store, situated behind Soma near the corner of Kirkwood and Grant Street, has been a small but suitable home since July, says Ziliak. Two medium-sized cases, as well as two shelves on the west-facing wall, display his goods, which range in price from $30 to $250.

The distinction between types of knives is important to Ziliak. Although he says he might eventually branch out into selling kitchen knives, Ziliak notes that he only sells high-quality knives meant for practical use and collecting, not for use as weapons.

Indiana Knives is open from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturdays. In addition to pocketknives, Ziliak also provides blade sharpening. For more information, call 812-727-0453 or visit