• Digital Magazine
        • Single Issues
          Merchandise
        • Annual
          Print
          Annual
          Digital
  • Insider

Hook & Barrel
A Lifestyle Magazine for Modern Outdoorsmen

A stunning collection of Falco Holsters

Learn About Falco Holsters’ History That All Started With Falconry

Steeped in Slovakian history dating back to the Middle Ages, falconry remains a staple of the nation’s culture. This is the origin of Falco Holsters – yes, even the company’s name pays homage to centuries-old connections to skills, tradition and birds of prey. Looking back then at Falco’s humble beginning, the fact the company launched with handmade falconry gloves makes perfect sense. Of course, today, as the company name implies, Falco’s primary focus is on holsters, and their commitment to intersecting handcraftsmanship and advanced technologies leaves Falco perched squarely on the leading edge of premium holster making. To understand how and why, it is best to begin with a foundational view.  

Author Kevin Reese doubles as a falconer during a tour at Falco Holsters in Slovakia.

Laying Falco’s Foundation 

Founded in 1989 and led by CEO Róbert Kováč, Falco Holsters is nestled deep in a caldera surrounded by the Štiavnica Mountains, in the picturesque Slovakian town of Banská Štiavnica. A mining town for roughly 800 years, residents – inhabiting the area as early as 2,700 BC, near the end of the Bronze Age – were already reaping the caldera’s precious-metal gifts – gold, silver, lead, copper, and zinc – exposed by the eruption of Štiavnica’s super-volcano more than 130,000 years before.  

Falco ROTO holster and town Banská Štiavnica
Above: Model rocking the ROTO holster. Above right: Banská Štiavnica

Mining hit a fever pitch in the 13th century and is responsible for the area’s rich precious-metal history that is foundational to Falco’s hometown today. However, all that glitters in Banská Štiavnica is not gold. Modern Banská Štiavnica flourished in the Renaissance era and for more than 500 years has been a hotspot for world-renowned, hand-crafted artisanry. It’s that Slovakian reputation, tradition, and artisanry that led to establishing Falco Holsters and what drives company growth today. Those heritage-rich attributes are also the driving forces behind Kováč’s leadership, as well as uniquely autonomous employee motivation.  

Holster Making and Building a Legacy 

Touring Falco Holsters is a unique experience. As a writer, firearm aficionado, and experienced manufacturing manager for more than 13 years in a previous life, I was fortunate to observe Falco’s fabrication processes from beginning to end. Sure, there are a couple of high-tech processes in the mix, but time-honored artisanry and handcraftsmanship win the day for Falco’s reputation. Put simply, the juice is worth the squeeze. Whether producing leather, fabric, Kydex, carbon-fiber, 3D-printed, or hybrid-material holsters, this is evident throughout Falco’s processes and is a great lesson for demanding firearm owners looking for top-shelf quality.  

Oddly enough, whether materials are organic or synthetic, Falco’s holster fabrication begins similarly, with high-tech cutting machinery. An automated cutting table, employing a bridge with a cutting head moving on the X and Y axis, cuts holster components from raw materials in an optimized sheet pattern to minimize raw material waste. The components are then grouped “per holster” meaning all components for a single holster are organized and oriented for hand-working processes. Perhaps the most popular holster material among Falco’s discriminating customers, leather takes up the lion’s share of production.  

falco holsters
Top-grade leather holsters begin to take shape at the massive cutting table.

The holster pieces are pulled by a hand-working artisan to prep for assembly. The first steps in multiple handcrafting processes are cleaning and edge-dressing the leather parts. Once completed, parts are presented to sewers, the second “high-tech” process – sewing machines. Did I say high-tech? Let’s be honest, aside from a foot pedal, later powered by electricity, chain-stitch sewing hasn’t changed much in the 170 years of reliable sewing-machine history. Good sewing also takes great skill. It truly is the bridge connecting advanced technology with handcraftsmanship. Falco’s walls house several rooms filled with sewers, their machines, and the fervent chatter of rapid-fire chain-stitching.  

Falco holster punching and sewing work
Above: A Falco factory craftsman poise to punch. Above right: A snapshot of the holster sewing process.

Once the leather components are sewn together, detailers go to work. Using traditional leather-working hand tools, master craftsmen in the finishing areas work busily to punch, fold, crease, stamp, form, and stain the leather holsters into works of art designed to fit handgun models perfectly while also providing the peace of mind that comes with reliable, passive-resistant open or concealed carry.  

Edge finishing and mold creation at Falco Holsters
Above: All Falco holsters get their edges dressed by hand. Above right: A Glock pistol holster mold being made.

To be clear, every Falco holster, regardless of material, is processed with the same scrutinizing, zero-tolerance for defects attention to detail. While such focus is definitely noteworthy, it’s eclipsed by an even more impressive observation. As a production manager having run the gamut with positive and negative attitudes in manufacturing, witnessing a devoted, pro-firearm, 100-person team happily doing their best to honor Slovakia’s traditions of craftsmanship and artisanry was an extraordinary and inspiring experience. Even better, all said and done, Falco Holsters are surprisingly affordable. It is an odd and beautiful mix – affordable, world-class craftsmanship – well worth the look at FalcoHolsters.com.  

Everyday Carry Survival
Did you enjoy this story? SUBSCRIBE today to get more like this!

Trending articles

Related articles

Shopping Cart
H&Bmag_logo_white+color_rory
ENTER YOUR EMAIL FOR VIP ACCESS TO:

You’ll hear from us one time per week!

The Latest Content
Hook & Barrel INSIDER
Sneak Previews of  Upcoming Issues
Exclusive Discounts & Special Offers
Giveaways
AND MORE!