From the Forge – News Archive

Juliet Fishenden

As you probably know, Made by the Forge pledges to plant a tree for every order received. We take this pledge very seriously. In February this year, hundreds of trees were planted thanks to all you wonderful people who ordered ironwork from us last year. The funds to do so were recently donated to the Suffolk Wildlife Trust for landscape trees to be planted around the development at Carlton Marshes Visitor Centre, car park and children’s play area.

Carlton and Oulton Marshes range over a one hundred and fifty hectare nature reserve in Lowestoft. They are collectively a lowland reserve in the Broads National Park. This consists of meadows, wet grasslands, reed beds, marshes and woodlands. We chose to support the planned tree planting needed at Carlton Marshes to help the Suffolk Wildlife Trust’s overall goal to make this reserve a very special place for wildlife and people. The volunteer team is putting in one exterior rabbit fence using chestnut posts and the trees are scattered within.

The Suffolk Wildlife Trust arranged the tree planting at Carlton Marshes, which will go some way towards this amazing location becoming an even more special place to visit. The marshes are open to anyone who wants a wild, outdoor experience. And who doesn’t?

The images were kindly supplied by the Suffolk Wildlife Trust. “Thank you once again for your terrific support” Michael Strand, Suffolk Wildlife Trust.

Juliet Fishenden

Our curtain poles are not exclusive to windows. The Portière rod is designed to feature curtains for doors and entrances as elegant decoration or practical insulation from draughts. The rod is attached above the door on a wall plate allowing the curtain to be drawn once the door is closed.

Door curtains come in many different configurations and Made by the Forge can make a door curtain pole for every door and every door space.

  • There’s the pole that drapes curtains over the whole door, drawn back to access the door.
  • There’s the drapery arm attached to the door itself that moves as the door moves.
  • Then there is the rod on a hinge which moves as the door opens and is swung back into place as you draw the curtain along the pole.

Whatever your door space, Made by the Forge can make the perfect pole, easy to install straight out of the box.

Our Portière Door Curtain Rod is made of solid 20mm iron attached to a handmade bracket which screws to the wall and allows the rod full movement (given the room) of 180 degrees. The rod is made to measure for either left or right opening doors and can feature any finial from the 20mm range.

Ordering is easy on our website and we have a useful diagram to help and guide you through the process. The price is calculated too for you depending upon which finial you choose.

There are many ways to dress a door so we have showcased below some of the ways our clients have designed the pole to work with their door space.

Abbie from Abbie Fitzpatrick Design had this to say:

I just wanted to says thank you for all your gorgeous curtain poles. This is the third housing project I’ve used you on and you really never disappoint. And everyone I recommend you to has the same experience. I wanted to send a couple of (shoddy) photos of some of your pole in situ as they really make it. It was a tumble down farm house in southern Italy. I’ll send over the professional photos when we get everything complete.
Many thanks,
Abbie

Top quality English hand made curtain poles, installed in a 17th century French farmhouse, a marriage made in heaven.                                                                                                                                                          Trish. Correze, France.

Image courtesy of Korner Interiors

Finally got the rail up and its great. Had to bend it a touch to work in our crooked house but it looks great. 

Tom

 

 

 

Juliet Fishenden

In creating a new product, like Made by the Forge’s fire pits, you often have to build it, live with it and put it through its paces to see how it can be improved. We had a lot of fun road testing both the huge Entertainer and the more portable Glamper fire pits. I heartily recommend an outdoor-cooked full English!

Henry from Apples from Suffolk commented recently on the Glamper he took away on holiday with him last year. “It looks beautiful and you can feel the quality craftsmanship.  Even cooking a few sausages becomes an occasion and its portable too!”

As summer is knocking on spring’s door, we decided to redesign the product for more ease of use and attractiveness. The grilling surface on both fire pits has been reworked. It is now laser cut for precision while the outer ring is then handcrafted with hooks and handles. These enable you to effortlessly lift it off giving you the full heat of the fire pit to enjoy as the sun goes down.

This means the cooking surface now includes space at the sides and around the circumference of the grill to keep cooked food hot and if you’re using a pan to fry eggs for example, it’s somewhere to keep it warm while the sausages are browning. Get seriously fired up with Made by the Forge’s new and improved Entertainer and Glamper fire pits

Juliet Fishenden

Made by the Forge make stunning wrought iron bay and circular window curtain poles. They are handmade to your individual window measurements to ensure an exact fit. These rails are slightly difficult to measure up for and install so we have produced visual guides to help you. The diagrams on our Bay Window Curtain Pole pages are simple to follow and we provide labelled boxes for you to add in your window measurements. Then our online instant price calculator totals together all your chosen components to give you an overall price. We hope this is an easy, convenient way to shop.

Made by the Forge have also available a Measuring up and Installing a Curved Bay curtain pole videos.

‘I have passed your contact details to my curtain shop – they were incredibly impressed. Especially by the passing rings which work brilliantly”
Elise, November 2018

Bay windows are such a beautiful addition to any room. Having a handmade pole, made especially for your unique window is really what your window would ask for if given a voice!

Hopefully, with the aid of the diagrams, videos and pricing calculator you will find that a handcrafted, blacksmith made to measure pole for your window is an affordable luxury.

 

 

Caroline Brett

Made by the Forge plants a native sapling for every order received. 2018 sees a new series highlighting the virtues of the British trees the company promotes as a major part of its ethos.

Neolithic tribes introduced the beech to Great Britain at the end of the last Stone Age for their edible nuts. Historically, the nuts or masts were an important source of fat and protein. As beech masts are small, covered in a hard outer shell, have a fibrous inner husk and are mildly toxic raw, only dedicated foragers gather them today. Roasting shelled masts improves their flavour and destroys the toxins. The French use them to make a kind of coffee and they can be made into a delicious pesto. Not so popular with people perhaps but the seeds are relished by mice, voles, squirrels and birds.

Beech trees are intolerant of waterlogged soil and severe frosts. They grow to 40 meters and live for up to 350 years but if coppiced can live to over a 1000. The tree canopy casts dense shade, keeping the forest floor clear of undergrowth, and carpets the ground thickly with leaf litter. In spring, before the leaves unfurl and block out the sunlight, beech woods with their rich soil support spectacular blankets of bluebells.

Beech bark is extremely thin and scars easily. It’s long been used to carve lovers’ initials and other forms of graffiti. The wood is fine-grained and knot free and used to make furniture, rifle butts, shoe heads and brush heads.

Beech supports ninety-eight species of insects including many species of moth and butterfly. The woods are also associated with native truffles (always seek expert advice before eating any wild fungi).

 The leaves turn from bright, lime green in spring though yellow to glorious russet before they fall.  Beech trees rarely fail to put on a spectacular show each Autumn.

Juliet Fishenden

Do you still have important stuff in boxes in a corner somewhere? Are there piles of papers and books still looking for a home? What about all those family photographs you’d like to display? A little while ago, we introduced the Forge Shelf Brackets, no nonsense, heavy-duty brackets that can take the heavy loads. They have been very popular. They were designed for the person who already has a wooden shelf for which they need made-to-measure brackets.

However, it followed that some customers might like the simplicity of buying the entire shelf in one go. So we sourced a sustainable wood supplier and can now offer two sizes of shelf (large or small). The wooden shelf itself is sturdy ash finished with a clear wood wax and together with those extra strong brackets, the large or small Forge Shelf Kit makes an ideal package to help you sort your life out. If it’s cluttering up floor space, shelve it!

The Forge Shelf Kit

Caroline Brett

Made by the Forge plants a native sapling for every order received. 2018 sees a new series highlighting the virtues of the British trees the company promotes as a major part of its ethos.

“Ash logs, all smooth and grey,
burn them green or old;
Buy up all that come your way,
They’re worth their weight in gold”

(old, anonymous poem).

Ash, known as the ‘king of firewood’, throws plenty of heat, doesn’t spit and will burn as green wood (although seasoned is better). A member of the olive family, it is probably the most versatile tree in the countryside. The wood is resilient, tough and very hard-wearing but lacks the oak’s resistance to rot. It’s not good for posts buried in the ground. In the past it was often coppiced on a ten-year cycle, providing timber for burning and construction. It was extensively used in the construction of early aircraft and even the body frame for early Volvo cars. Flexible, shock-resistant and not liable to split, it has traditionally been used for bows, tool handles, tennis rackets and snooker cues. It is still popular to make furniture, flooring, walking sticks and lobster pots and is our choice of wood for our shelves, tables and benches.

Known for its helicopter seeds, growing on average to 18m tall but occasionally reaching a massive 43m, it rarely exceeds 250 years of age.  Mature trees are known to suffer ‘summer branch drop’ when apparently healthy trees drop large branches for no apparent reason. 

Ash dieback, caused by the fungus is a serious disease that is killing ash trees across Europe.  The fungus blocks water transport within the tree causing leaf loss, lesions on the bark and ultimately the dieback of the crown. There is no known cure. An infected tree will ultimately die. Scientists across Europe are fighting a race against time to find resistant strains to safeguard the ash from the devastating effects of Dutch elm disease on the English elm. 

Juliet Fishenden

The most influential design magazine on the market today is  The World of Interiors. This 400 page glossy monthly is a treasure trove of originality, the traditional, the cutting edge and hugely desirable interior design. Glancing through its pages is window shopping at its most sophisticated.

Where better then to showcase Made by the Forge’s most eye-catching and unique light, the Farrier’s Cage Six Circle Globe Chandelier. Designed by Anthony Dickens, this stunning luminaire is eye-catching in the extreme, the forged ironwork being both contemporary and traditional, handcrafted using time-honoured blacksmith skills. If any of Made by the Forge products deserve such a prestigious showcase, it’s the Globe Chandelier. Going up in the world…

 

Juliet Fishenden

Here at Made by the Forge, we pride ourselves on the excellence of our handcrafted products so it makes perfect sense to use video to show our customers the best way to get our curtain poles and shelving up to make your windows and walls stand out. Once again we invited filmmaker Alan Miller to shoot and produce our videos. He has over thirty-five years of experience in the film and television industry and it’s great to have the benefit of his knowledge.

We put aside half a day to shoot three videos. Any one who’s been involved with these sorts of projects knows that it’s never as easy as the finished video appears. It helps enormously that Richard is very relaxed on camera, a one-take wonder even. Alan is a one-man production outfit but he’s not gifted as a hair and make up artist, so you’re getting Richard as Richard, no frills. He’s always ready for his close up.

The three videos are straightforward enough. How to (1) Put Up A Curtain Pole, (2) Put Up A Recess Pole and (3) Put Up A Made by the Forge Shelf. We hope you find them useful. How To videos online can be enormously helpful and even encourage you to do the work yourself. We hope ours are short, to the point and informative.

Juliet Fishenden

Summer is the perfect time to take advantage of the lighter evenings and to choose carefully considered pieces for your own space outside. Al fresco social occasions always need a focal point, a literal campfire around which to gather for warmth and the promise of a well-branded steak and sausage, real or vegetarian.

Made by the Forge has the perfect fire pits for any occasion. First is the top of the line model with an astonishing capacity of sixty sausages… The Entertainer, with a massive diameter of 75cm, is the roaring heavyweight of our fire pit range. It’s also a thing of beauty on its much more than sturdy stands. There are two height options available depending on the outdoor space in which you entertain. This colossus throws out winter-warming temperatures as well as providing a whole dinner party’s outdoor cooking needs.

If you don’t need to feed the masses and if you want a more portable choice to accompany you on camping adventures, then look no further than The Glamper. This more portable option has a diameter of 50cm but it’s no less fierce as a heat provider. Like its big brother, it has a choice of two heights depending on how you like to cook and warm yourself at home with the family or while under the stars.

Both fire pits show off Made by the Forge’s rigorous attention to detail and unmatched craftsmanship. Make this summer one to remember.

The heat is on.