Sunday 22 January 2023

Forging ahead.....

 ......with some basic blacksmithing skills.

It's fairly difficult to get blacksmiths to make the standard items I need. Rosehead nails, snipe hinges, strap hinges, locks etc. So it's back to school for me. Let's start at the beginning, firing the forge, making coathooks, pokers, toasting forks ....

Love it. I wouldn't burn coal in my stove any more, but I love the smell of coal burning; I grew up with coal fires, the only warmth in an otherwise unheated northern house in the 1970s. Not far away, the coal-fired blast furnaces of Teeside pumping out steel for the nation's shipbuilding. At it's height the area had 91 blast furnaces, by the 80s just one. That too has now closed. Along with most of Great Britain's heavy industry. The shame. Oh how the mighty have fallen.

Mild steel, coal, hand-powered wind and hammers. In my blood from aeons past. My great-grandfather's family were steel/ironworkers in Sheffield and before that became an industrial centre, around Worcester. Most probably out in the woods, producing iron with charcoal.

So it's up to a barn on a stormy, icy winter evening, with the daughter, to shelter with the horses and pigs and bother some metal. Elemental is not the word.



Friday 20 January 2023

Strapwork in the round

 So taking strapwork round a column or pillar.

This design comes from St. Mary's pews. There, it is on a flat panel, but I think it transfers well on to a curved surface.

Friday 6 January 2023

Raphael lives.

Raphael lives. Loving the Totnes strapwork on curved surfaces, Expect lots more.


Monday 2 January 2023


Henceforth to be known as Raphael. I had to blind him today (remove his eyes) and give him back his sight (give him new eyes further back). Raphael is the archangel/seraph associated with healing, apparently, so the name is appropriate.


Sunday 1 January 2023

Seraphim in the rough


It seems that this one may be seraphim i.e. the highest order of angels. What makes me think that? It has 6 wings!

Here it is in the rough.