Blacksmith poppies

I have been delaying revisiting my blacksmith poppies and the ‘how I made them’ bit. But here goes.

First of all a reminder on the left of how it all finished up.

The rock was made from a piece we obtained from our favourite farm in Northumberland.

That was the easy bit, simply drilling some holes ready for the metal stems. Except it wasn’t that easy, think flower arranging with very heavy flowers and you get the idea.

On to the first element, the leaves.

First stage was to cut them out of 1.5mm sheet steel using my nice new plasma cutter.

As ever, the right tool for the job made it very easy to do, but without it, it would have been impossible.

 

 

The next stage was to form the sheet into leaf shapes. This required the forge and a heavy gauge V block.

A great deal of hammering and bending later and the sheet metal was looking much

more 3 dimensional and leaf like.

 

Repeated another 6 times and I had the 7 leaves I needed.

As with gardening, even numbers just doesn’t look right. There is probably a mathematical rule for it somewhere, but simply put, 7, not 6 and not 8, leaves were now ready for the next stage.

Come back soon for stage 2.

 

 

 

Blacksmith bird feeder

The cold of winter, and general lack of food for our feathered friends, makes it a great time to put up a blacksmith bird feeder.

I have made 2 on a similar theme, basically because a lady asked me to make one against a sketch and then my wife liked it so much she wanted one too.

They are free standing, with a spike to push into the ground, 7 foot tall and made from 19mm steel. This makes them very substantial, able to stand up to the biggest birds and strongest winds, and to my general style of nothing thin and flimsy.

They were left in untreated steel finish, so will rust and age gracefully.