Spring is in the air!!

I’ll be out at the Homegrown Spring Market next weekend in Sylvan Lake,Ab

There is a VIP evening on Saturday with special tickets for $10.00  you can get yours at eventbrite.ca , a few will be sold at the door too,checkout their Facebook page for more info and the main day on Sunday April 9th from10-4

Also check out my ‘Iron sunset forge’ Facebook page this week for a chance to win tickets to the VIP evening on Saturday !! More info on the draw soon.

Info about event :

https://www.facebook.com/events/207305326343640??ti=ia

 

 

 

The last few months in the smithy.

The last few months have been busy at the shop.  Over the holidays I had the opportunity to sell my art at the local Christmas market which kept me busy . I also joined a local women’s entrepreneur group which I have enjoyed and learned a lot from in the last two months.  As a late Christmas present I received a propane forge that we bought from a local albertan blacksmith shop ( front step forge). I have to say that it has helped improve productivity and I’ve been able to go out to the shop on even really cold days and get things going. With out a chimney in the shop it made it difficult on really cold days to do anything since I would have to drag my forge outside to smith. Bring only able to smith for a few hours till it was too cold didn’t make for a productive day in the shop or rather out of the shop. Happily I can stay out of the cold weather and wind now and more is getting done. I just have to learn to pace myself since the metal heats up faster then it does in the coal forge, I found that on the first day of full use I did about two days worth in almost five hours . I also found that my hammering arm was not happy with me by the end of the day either.

One of the goals I set for myself was to have my iron work in at least 3 stores this year and I can say I’m off to a good start. The local balloon shop has offered to showcase one of my roses with my cards for people to call me for orders, which is awesome👍 Thank you Balloons Galore in sylvan lake !!  And I also opened up a page at Artfire.com to sell some pieces on.  Feel free to check the new page out and let me know what to think. Under search just put  ironsunsetforge .  I’ve started working on some sets of medieval cutlery and I have almost completed a set of numbers for a local restaurant in lacombe, cilantro and chive. I’ll place pictures on the gallery when they are done.  My other goal this year will be to try and do more blogs about the forge and the cool things I’m up to. Till then have fun striking the iron everyone.

Fort MacMurray Benches

I had been out of the province in May when the devastating forest fires at Fort MacMurray happened and I, like many others in Alberta and across Canada felt helpless. I knew I didn’t have the skills needed for this, I was not a fire fighter or a medic but I began to wonder what I could do to help. As a blacksmith what skills did I have that would be useful.  Then I began to rethink that thought; what could blacksmiths in Alberta do to help. This is when the idea of a hammer in came to me. So after I got back to Alberta I started to flush out this idea and begin the design of the bench and once I had it more thought out I brought it to the Lacombe historical society which runs the blacksmith museum that I volunteer for.

The Lacombe historical society has always been supportive of pretty much every idea I bring to them.( the 16 foot high French double gates gave them pause). They are so supportive and I have to admit they are a huge reason I enjoy the volunteering I do for the museum.

We sent an invite out to the Alberta blacksmiths on as many channels and guilds as I could find. Then on August 20-21,2016,during our farm days event, we had our first hammer in at the museum. One bench was auctioned off at the Culture and Harvst festival in September 24- October 2 ( its new residence is now in Calgary Ab) and the other will be completed over the winter and brought up and donated to the community of Fort MacMurray in the spring. We had 4 skilled blacksmiths and approximately ten volunteer blacksmiths from our wonderful volunteer smiths show up each day to work on the benches. I’m happy to say we were able to get the larger pieces done that weekend and worked on the smaller pieces on our open days at the museum and at my own shop as well. Then we took all of the pieces and drove up to Edmonton area to Scott’s shop and continued to work on the first bench that was to be for the auction. After completing the bench I brought it to the painters here in Red Deer ,Ab (Metalstrip and coatings inc ) and they did a wonderful job. The proceeds  raised is to go to the Red Cross for Fort MacMurray . I will admit it took 3 days longer than expected to finish putting it together but it looks wonderful and all of the smiths who helped out should feel really proud in what they helped accomplish. And a super thank you to Scott Quinelle for going above and beyond that last week,I really appreciated the effort you put into this project. Not sure on how many man hours it all took but I’ll figure that out and let you know.

Here is the list of names of the smiths that helped with making these benches:

Dennis Girardin,Cale Chambers,Rene Theroux,Tim Turnbull,Henrietta Verwey,Karl Beller,Colton Broughton,Mitch Langell,Gordon Peters,Bryan Sved,Scott Quinell,Kenny Fuller,Nathan Stone,Seth Burnard

 

In the spring I’ll keep you all posted as to the second bench and us going to Fort Mac .

A heritage blacksmith dealing with a modern day website…

So, I can take a piece of metal and bend it to my will. Transform it into something artistic and functional, this is something I have been doing for years. Yet this managing my own website is a test of my patience and knowledge of all things modern. Up until now I never deemed myself as a Luddite ,however dealing with the simplest of tasks such as setting up a Facebook button that goes to my Facebook page and not to the person who is looking at my sites page is getting the better of me. Short story, this past weekend during thanksgiving I was proud to show off my new site to my family. Well, needless to say it was interesting. My cousin quickly typed in my web site address and I proudly showed her all the cool things I’ve done so far (mentioning it took me 2 and half hours to get the “my store” button to work), and that I finally got the facebook button to work too. That’s when she clicked on it and it went to her page instead of mine….. Needless to say it’s a work in progress and thankfully I can counter balance the modern stress’ with a day out at the shop. I’ll let you know how Friday goes at the forge and hopefully I get a break through with the Facebook button too 😏(⬅️ Emoji hehe 👍 )

First blog post

As I start on my next adventures with blacksmithing I decided I wanted to share them and I also wanted to have a place where people can see the things I make at the forge. I’ve been smithing now for over fifteen years and I’ve realized one important thing in this adventure I call life, no matter how much I know there’s always something new to learn. I hope you come along with me as continue to learn.

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