News Archive

Juliet Fishenden

A company that offers a lifetime guarantee is a company that has great faith in its products. Made by the Forge’s handcrafted ironwork is made to last and made to a world-class standard. Its business model is the epitome of the idea gaining traction now known as ‘buying once’.

Living in a modern, technological world, we have moved away from the traditional practices of building products to last. We throw away toasters, printers, kettles and phones because we can afford to. When was the last time we darned a sock or even mended anything? We are reliant on our consumer needs being met but for the planet’s sake, that road has a destination at which none of us want to arrive.

Finding those products that only need to be bought once will become more of a priority and wrought ironwork stands the ravages of time extremely well. Although wrought iron has been around since the days of the Roman Empire, it took off in the U.K. in the late eighteenth century. There are three hundred year-old iron gates still standing in some of the stately homes of the country, testaments to both the iron and the care taken in its upkeep.

There are many estimates of how long ironwork can last. Indoor ironwork would seem to have an advantage, in terms of longevity but the moisture in the air indoors is just as much of a problem over time. The by-product of iron’s exposure to air and water vapour is of course rust but rust can be dealt with easily keeping your ironwork in tip-top condition for decades. So how long does ironwork last? Long enough for Made by the Forge to promise you a lifetime’s guarantee.

“Environmentally conscious shopping is as simple as buying long-lasting products.” https://uk.buymeonce.com

Juliet Fishenden

Our personal and business ethos is self-sufficiency, caring for our planet and one of the ways we give back is to plant trees. What makes the company unique is its pledge to plant a tree for every order received. We make sure that what the company takes from the Suffolk environment, it puts back into the Suffolk environment.

Donated Trees Planted at Carlton Marshes

Just before the lockdown, we were extremely fortunate to check in with Suffolk Wildlife Trust, specifically Carlton Marshes, their flagship nature reserve situated on the south west edge of Lowestoft.

How many trees planted?

What we didn’t know until we arrived was just how many trees you, our customers, have enabled the trust to plant. Michael Strand, Community Fundraising Manager, said that “…as part of the restoration work to create a 1000 acre wild destination area, the Trust is providing new access  opportunities for visitors in and around the new visitor centre. This includes landscaping a corridor of native trees and shrubs to help safely guide people towards the centre who enter the reserve by foot and to act as a scrubby wildlife corridor along the fringes of the wild play area and car park.”

Tree Species Planted

Species planted in the fields of Carlton Piece and Burnt Hill by volunteer teams from Essex & Suffolk Water and Suffolk County Council late last year include hawthorn, blackthorn, dog rose, spindle, hazel and guelder-rose. Thanks to Made by the Forge’s customers, Suffolk Wildlife Trust has planted approximately 1800 trees at Carlton Marshes Nature Reserve. 1800! Pat yourselves on the back, everybody.

 

Juliet Fishenden

Now more than ever we will be considering the insides of our homes. We are all in them more and a lot of us will use this time to make simple improvements and get the paint pot out!

I first met interior designer Jane McIntyre online, as one often does. She came to my attention because Richard had been making some bespoke iron curtain poles for one of her clients. I took a look at her website and was immediately smitten. I loved her style and began following her interesting, colourful, quirky homeware objects that were appearing on her blog and instagram feed. The thing that was most apparent to me was her love of colour and her ability to use it to create luxurious spaces. Jane says herself:

“I hope to encourage my clients to be braver with colour, pattern and texture. I never push my ideas but I do so love it when clients thank me for steering them away from their comfort zone to a more exciting place.”

So, inspired by Jane I thought I would introduce a bit of colour to our own walls. Easier said than done! I found it impossible to make a decision, there are so many colours and variations of shades available that it made me scuttle back to the safety of an off white neutral. Knowing that Jane offers advice remotely I decided to call her and I’ve never looked back.

Newly decorated bedroom painted in Lagoon Water.

Finding the right paint for our old cottage walls was essential so on Jane’s suggestion I used the wonderful Pure and Original Paint from Holland, whose chalky depths – the result of much more pigment than a standard emulsion – sit particularly well with our beams and oak doors.

Images from www.pure-original.com


Fabulous to use, even though it prefers to be brushed and not rolled, this paint outshines any other that I have used and, surprisingly for a chalk paint, it is even washable once it has cured for two weeks. (Rather essential with two muddy boys!) The colours are remarkable, sultry, moody and gentle, all rolled into one. I took one very adventurous step (guided by Jane all the way) and painted the walls and ceilings the same colour in the children’s rooms – I was unsure at first but now we all love
 the way the room envelops you in a comforting feeling.

So far we have only finalised two rooms, but have started planning another three and I can’t wait to get started! Watch this space!

To contact Jane go to janemcintyredesign.com or call 02380 812239.  Jane can offer her services via FaceTime also.
Juliet Fishenden

There has been no period of time in human civilisation equivalent to this present moment. Right now, we understand that our actions as consumers have reached a tipping point and if we do not check our continued and unthinking usage of materials such as plastic, we will be responsible for vastly negative and irreversible effects on the planet. Responsible and discerning people know this and are slowly changing their attitudes towards the products they buy.

There is one material in everyday use that due to its longevity and strength is not actually consumed. It is used and can be re-used, re-purposed, re-made and recycled over and over again. An investment in this material is never wasted. It can be built upon by successive generations. At Made by the Forge we call this material ‘iron’.  In other areas of manufacture it goes by the name ‘steel’ and as a metal in the construction industry it is one of the most recyclable and reusable metals in the world.

Steel’s inherent strength does not wear out from overuse. It does not creep (become deformed due to physical stresses) or buckle. If you have products from Made by the Forge and you move house, your ironwork can move with you. If you choose to recycle it, it will be reformed into something else, never losing its practical use in other areas. In short, environmentally, you can’t go wrong buying an iron/steel product. At madebytheforge.co.uk, you’ll find nothing but…

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.