Craftsman Week: Hand engraver carrying on father’s tradition of fine engraving

MARRERO, La. (WGNO)- A crafty man on the West Bank  is doing something that you don't see much anymore.  Raymond Armand Jr. of Armand Engraving in Marrero is a hand engraver.

This week, News with a Twist has featured a variety of craftsmen who use their hands to make everything from guitars to duck decoys to wood works - and now hand engraving.


Jewelry, knives, guns, if you want them engraved, Raymond Armand uses his hands as his power tools to give it that special touch.

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"My father, Raymond Sr. was an engraver.  He was a jewelry engraver, and he taught me how to engrave jewelry.  It's a family tradition and I always wanted to make my dad proud," he said.


After his father passed away in 1993, Raymond Armand Jr. wanted the art of hand engraving to live on.

"I'm doing the best job that I can do, the key thing he taught me was to take your time and do it right.  That really stuck with me," he said.

Raymond's taken the craft to the next level, not only hand-engraving with a hand tool, but a power-assisted hand engraver, as well.


Raymond now uses a more modern hand-engraving technique than his father, and he recognizes that hand engraving is a dying art, mainly because machines are now taken over.

"Hand engraving is so much more personal.  Machines don't come close to hand engraving.  It takes a lot of patience and you're going to sit for a lot of long hours.  I feel like it helps if you have an artistic background," he said.

A craft his father reluctantly taught him, thinking it would only be a hobby for his son, ultimately became Raymond's life passion.


"I really hope that I'm making my father proud," he said.

He recently took home top prize as "Best Engraved Hand Gun" at the Gun Engraver Show in Las Vegas.


To check out more of his work, click here.

Follow Raymond Armand Jr. on Instagram @raymondarmand71