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Hello from Ecuador

Don't forget to post pics when done...I found paracord to be the simplest and still has a nice look to it.

I always wear calfskin gloves when doing chopping chores and that will greatly improve your grip especially when damp or wet.

One thing I have not tried yet is to score the handle with a nice pattern. Maybe give that a go.

The grooves will give you superior grip over the 550 cord.

Good mods my friend. Makes me want to give a hand at it......
Something with a thin direct flame so it doesn't spill over and burn the peaks of the handle just the valleys. Do you live in a sunny area? Perhaps a magnifying glass or woodburning tool?
Sand lightly around the grooves to cleanup residual burned wood, if possible, and stain with a contrasting slightly lighter stain. Followup with either beeswax or tung oil and I think you're all set.

Lookin' good man! :thumbup:
Dude, you're way to methodical for me! :thumbup:

That looks good. If I had any suggestion it would be that some brass tacks would kick it up once you get the color on but who am I to interfere with such talent. :D

I saw someplace where you can simulate tiger maple with some swirls and Minwax.

Can't wait to see your next step.