K.J. Groven grew up in Skien, Norway, and spent most of his childhood on the family farm working with his grandparents. In 1999, he left Norway to attend South Dakota School of Mines and received a degree as a mechanical engineer. After some time as an engineer, he built log homes and did custom woodworking. He was introduced to a blacksmithing club during this time and was soon making buildings, cabinets, and other furniture in the Norwegian style, as well as forging tools and hardware. He believes he has found his true calling.