As a blacksmith my work over the last 25 years has been largely ‘forge centric’. I tend to look first to the use of heat and hammer rather than rolls and laser, and to favour the logic of traditional joints and methodology over the conveniences of electrically welded component led design. This has meant that much of my work has been to do with restoration and refurbishment but, as can be seen in the commissions gallery, I have also fulfilled many commissions of much more contemporary flavour.
Jobs can come through the door in vastly different states of dress. From the bare problem in complete need of a solution – a skimpy dot in the middle of a half inch rectangle drawn on the back of an envelope (at least it wasn’t a fag packet!) and signifying, as it turned out, a clockwork spitjack, springs to mind – through to the bike courier with a pannier full of blueprints . . and every shade of deshabille in between.
I am as prepared to respond to the former as to the latter but it is probably fair to say that I can offer most benefit where detail and method are not rigorously stipulated and where there exists a collaborative spirit .
I am keen on the use of test pieces and maquettes where possible as a way of ensuring good detailing, clear communication and as an aid to pricing correctly. I also welcome my customers, or potential customers, visits at the workshop as it is often helpful in the discussion of a proposal to be able to refer to actual physical ‘stuff ‘, whether it be artefacts or materials.
There are some areas in which I have acquired a particular familiarity and have developed my own solutions and language – as well as a back catalogue to which one can refer.
For example I am frequently asked to provide bespoke curtain hanging arrangements – for the tricky places within embrasures, around corners etc. as well as in more standard, face mounted, situations – and have consequently developed a range of solutions and techniques for addressing the most commonly encountered problems.
While this does not easily translate into a series of products that one can enumerate and offer for sale off the peg, it can reasonably be presented as a basis for bespoke services.
As can be seen in the Commissions Gallery the design and forging of door furniture is an area of frequent focus. I also do a lot of work around fires and fireplaces, while gates, railings and handrails are all dietary staples. A common theme running through much of this activity is the creation of mechanisms and devices of one sort and another.
These areas of special interest and experience are outlined in the pages below, with a view to clarifying what I might offer to your project.
In the Smorgasbord section I present a brief overview of the range of work undertaken over the last 25 years as well as linking to my terms and conditions for commissioned work.