Working with Metal

Hammered Metal, Phillip Bowling, Artist Blacksmith, Hammered MetalA blacksmith is a metalsmith who creates objects from wrought iron, or steel by forging the metal by using tools to hammer, bend, and cut the metal. Blacksmiths produce objects such as gates, grilles, railings, light fixtures, furniture, sculptures, tools, agricultural implements, decorative and religious items, cooking utensils, and weapons.

While there are many people who work with metal such as farriers, wheelwrights, and armorers, the blacksmith has a general knowledge of how to make and repair many things, from the most complex of weapons and armor to simple things like nails or lengths of chain.

Phillip Bowling Artist Blacksmith

An artist blacksmith like Phillip Bowling owner of Noble Forge is known for architectural blacksmithing using combinations of wrought iron, steel, bronze, copper, nickel alloys and aluminum. While most metalworking is now mass-produced using molds in factories, Noble Forge continues the tradition of working freehand, using the same tools that blacksmiths have relied on for hundreds of years. If you were to ask Phillip how what he does is different than metals mass produced he would say “I’m working directly on the metal, I’m not melting it into a liquid and pouring it into a mold.”  In this way,  Phillip and the artist of Noble Forge create custom metal work for architects, designers and personal clients. He has made everything from custom railings, fireplace doors, privacy screens, gates and doors,  to hand-hammered curtain hardware.

dragon door knockerNoble Forge provides custom designed ornamental iron works through the fabrication of architectural and ornamental metals.  We work with the metal to achieve high quality craftsmanship, with an acute attention to detail and excellent customer service. Our customers understand the difference between having something made by an artist blacksmith versus buying something off the shelf.  It’s exactly the same as getting an item at your local convenience store instead of buying it hand made by a local artisan.  Organic vs. Inorganic.  Yes, it can cost more but tastes much better or lasts longer than you would ever have anticipated.  If it is quality you are looking for in your metal work, contact Noble Forge.

Coming soon…all about leaves.

The Iron Art of the Great Heron

Great Heron in Metal

Birds have been used since the dawn of man in art.   You can find pictures of birds on cave walls in petroglyphs as well as in Egyptian Hieroglyphics.   It is not surprising then that over the years, Noble Forge has created custom pieces that have included birds in the design.  One particular fireplace screen was the setting for the Great Heron.  Found among the cattails and tall marsh grass, the great heron hunts for food.  Herons are known in ancient folklore and on totems to be a symbol of patience, balance and grace.  If you happen to come upon a heron, they are captivating birds to watch.  Tall and gangly, yet graceful, the heron is a hunter that displays an intelligence and deep concentration when considering its prey.

Reeds of Great Heron Fireplace Screen DetailWhen bearing in mind these facts, being able to embody this bird on a custom fireplace screen makes sense.   The ability to capture the scene of a heron standing in the marshes awaiting the opportunity to catch a meal in metal was a challenge but one worthy of our trade and artistic nature.   Imagine each time this customer walks in view of their fireplace, they are rewarded with the art of the heron found in his reeds, awaiting his next meal.  The art does not end with the heron but in the detail of the cattails breaking across the frame of the screen, the tall grass bent at an angle, the swirls located along the bottom of the custom panel representing the water.  Branches hang low, camouflaging the hunt while forming the outline of the custom piece.

Great Heron in Metal Detail

Iron art at its finest found in the marshy wetlands scene of a great heron on in the hunt.  There are a multitude of natural scenes that can be found in functional art.  Noble Forge can bring that scene to you in metal for your custom screen, door, gate, stair rail, balcony railing or wall art.  The possibilities are endless when you have an idea and the right craftsman that can create it for you.  Phillip Bowling is a blacksmith that creates art with a forge and a hammer.  Contact Noble Forge for the opportunity to bring a vision to life in metal.  Noble Forge is synonymous with iron art.  Patience, balance and grace, like the heron, can be discovered in metal.  

Why Custom Fireplace Screens?

Fireplace Screen with Scroll BorderOther than designers, most people do not think of a fireplace screen or fireplace doors as an opportunity to enhance the beauty of their home or workplace.  However, when you think about sitting in front of a fireplace, mesmerized by the heat and flames, you can imagine that if you were to have a unique and stunning screen or door in front of that fireplace, you would look at it all the time.  What we are talking about is a functional work of art.  When there is no fire in the hearth, you have the gift of elegance and splendor.   A beautiful fireplace screen transforms an ordinary fireplace into an extraordinary experience. With Noble Forge’s custom fireplace screens, you can create a stunning focal point in your home or lobby that radiates beauty and warm hospitality, elevating the enjoyment to both you and your guests.

Noble Forge has been creating custom works of art since 1996 and is known for its exceptional hand-forged products. Custom made fireplace screens, doors and accessories are an example of those products.  Custom fireplace screens allow for the customer to develop a design style that is complementary to the specific design needs of each fireplace.  Whether classic, contemporary, an arts and crafts, traditional or eclectic, a custom fireplace screen adds an additional layer of symmetry, balance and beauty to any room or lobby.Fireplace screen with Bedknobs and scrolls with flower tip design

All of Noble Forge’s custom fireplace screens are hand-forged by skilled artisans in our studio located in Los Angeles’ North Hollywood area of Southern California. We have created unique and magnificent fireplace screens for homes in Malibu, Pacific Palisades, Beverly Hills, Canoga Park, Estes Park, Pasadena, Century City, Brentwood, Hidden Hills, Los Angeles, Palos Verdes and more.  Each piece is carefully crafted using proven, centuries-old techniques. Our priority for every fireplace screen and fireplace doors is the same for all of our products:  “the highest quality, no matter how long it takes.” This unique focus is what makes our pieces stand out in a market saturated with low-quality, mass-produced items.

Custom fireplace screens, fireplace accessoriesOur artisan blacksmith, Phillip Bowling has thoroughly studied the art of hand-forging techniques as well as chemical treatments, patinas, and painting.  He has extensively researched the history of original metal designs as well as newer techniques traveling throughout the United States and Canada studying other artist blacksmiths and researching up to date design methods. His passion and dedication to the excellence and authenticity of each piece he creates is clearly reflected in the quality and design of each Noble Forge product.

An investment that will last for generations, custom iron hand-forged fireplace screens from Noble Forge bring much more than beauty and character to your fireplace:

  • High-quality fireplace screens protect buildings, family and guests from the dangers of flying embers.
  • Our screens are functional works of art – easy to use, that last for generations.
  • No more struggling with stiff, squeaky doors, rusty mesh curtains or embarrassing soot stains.
  • No worries about shattered glass and dangerous shards.
  • Customized fireplace screen sizes and designs are available to meet your unique needs, ensuring you always get exactly what you want.
  • Depending on your design needs, select a hinged door fireplace screen, a single panel fireplace screen, 3 panel screen or L Fireplace Screen with Three Panels and Brass Rivetsshaped fireplace screen

Our mission is to create unique pieces for your hearth, whether home or hotel lobby, that are beautiful, sculptural and functional. Our reward is seeing the joy they bring to you as well as the opportunity to continue carrying on the ancient craft of blacksmithing. For more information, fill out our contact sheet at www.NobleForge.com or send an email directly to info@nobleforge.com.

If you are in the Los Angeles area and are interested in stopping by the studio, feel free to visit us during working hours or call to make an appointment, 818.765.5004.

Can you make this?

Often times we have clients approach us with a simple question “Can you make this?”

Which is typically followed by a rough sketch or drawing of an object that they would like created.  The answer is “Yes.”

Then the question is followed by another questions…”What if…”  “What if I want to have bronze work in this area here”,

Drawing of Fireplace Doors

“Can you put a scroll in the middle with a basket weave pattern around it”, “Could we have claw feet and a dragon head coming out the flower pot?”

Yes, Yes, and Yes.  If you can dream it, we can build it.  It’s undoubtedly a matter of what the client wants and the budget for the item.

We want to build for you your vision.  Maybe you don’t really know exactly what you want.  We can help you there too.  We can develop plans to complement your design and architecture.  Of course, your input is always taken into consideration.

Let me give you an example…We had a client come to us with a drawing.  “Can you make this? ”

“Yes, we can make these intricate fireplace doors.  But what would you like to do about handles?”  We suggested a scroll leaf design in copper

Custom Fireplace Doors In Progress

to accent the piece with complementary accents to draw all the details together.

The next step

  is to build it.  In progress, the fireplace doors look like this…

After completion of each piece the custom fireplace doors are assembled in the shop.  These particular fireplace doors were made from steel, measuring 8 ft by 5 ft, using copper and hand rubbed oil, with gold leaf ornaments.

Once complete, the custom fireplace doors were installed in a private home in Hidden Hills, California.

Custom Fireplace Doors

Beautiful and functional artwork, the fireplace doors add an additional dimension to an elegant fireplace that can stand the test of time, hand forged by an artist blacksmith, Phillip Bowling of Noble Forge.

Back to the original question, “Can you make this?”.  The answer is, “YES”.

An Artist for All Seasons

Phillip Bowling creates artistic masterpieces using the ancient skill of blacksmithing.  His hand-forged metal artwork graces homes as purely artistic creations as well as  highly functional pieces such as fireplace screens, gates and chandeliers.

All of Phillip’s works are one of a kind and there is no mass production, guaranteeing you an individual, unique work of art for your home or office.