Showcase Staircase

Custom wrought iron stair railAt Noble Forge we are always open to collaborating with other artists and builders on projects. We shared with you the amazing Occidental gate project we worked on with Heather McLarty. Recently, we were asked to work with a construction company and glass artist to create a staircase for a beautiful home in Santa Monica, California.

The home is Spanish Colonial style, which features curves and arches, stucco exterior, balconies and painted accent tiles. Terra cotta was used for both the roof and entryway. Painted tiles accent both the exterior and interior of the house, creating a flow when transitioning from walkway to home entry.

Once in the home, the ornamental staircase sits prominently in the entryway. Our Artist Blacksmith, Phillip Bowling, was provided with glass bottle bottoms in various cool colors, which he then incorporated into the ornamental ironwork design of the staircase. The staircase is set against light blond wooden floors and rich cherry brunette wooden doors and molding. Each stair features painted tiles, some that match those used in the exterior design of the house, others are of various multi-colored designs.

All of these elements came together to create a one-of-a-kind showcase staircase, which is both playful and stunning at the same time. The staircase is in balance when considering the elements of Feng Shui. In Feng Shui, it is recommended that each room of a home include at least three of the five elements; wood, fire, earth, metal and water. In this instance, the staircase area is composed wooden doors and floors, an ornamental metal staircase, glass accent pieces, which represent water, and tiles which represent earth.

Noble Forge takes great pride in the work we do and we were thrilled to be a part of yet another exciting project. We hope the home’s owners enjoy every step they take!

 

 

 

An Everlasting Gift for your Beyond Special Someone

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Soon the harried holiday season is going to take hold. People will be out and about shopping for that perfect gift; many of which will be gifts that live in just this moment and are only for this time. At Noble Forge we wish to offer to you a different thought on gift giving, and this is take the time to slow down the fast paced shop-till-you-drop to create a beyond special gift for that beyond special someone.

We will work directly with you to take the design and feel you envision, and then translate it into a beautiful, sculptural, custom forged piece; one that will be a cherished for years, even generations, to come.

Imagine how honored they will feel when presented with your creation! Your gift could be functional, fun or inspirational, either way it will be instantly recognized for its uniqueness. All of the pieces we create – fireplace screens, tool sets, andirons, railings, chandeliers and gates – are hand-formed by skilled artisans in our studio located North Hollywood, California. Each piece is carefully crafted using time-honored and centuries-old techniques, an approach that is rarely used today –this attention to detail and authenticity is what makes our pieces so special.

A one-of-a-kind, gorgeous piece of art does not happen overnight. It may take up to six weeks to complete a project, so contact us today (818-765-5004) and let’s get started on a most amazing gift for this season – one that will last for every single season of a lifetime and then some.

At Noble Forge we’ve established a well-deserved reputation for exceptional hand-forged products, allow us to help you establish a well-deserved reputation as a gift giver of the highest form – one that creates beauty from the heart.

To learn more, be sure to visit our FAQ page.

An Interview with Artist Blacksmith Heather McLarty

 

Enter the Field of Play. approx. 15' 6" W x 15' H x 1'6" D. Steel, copper, glass (by Cathi Milligan), bronze, stone, bowling ball, pool ball. commissioned by Occidental College. Eagle Rock, CA.

Noble Forge had the amazing opportunity to work with a fellow Artist Blacksmith, Heather McLarty. Heather describes her work as transforming “industrial materials into soulful sculpture using fire, anvil and hammer; mind, body and heart.” She has an impressive portfolio of artwork, and we were thrilled when she engaged us to help construct a piece of public art – a gate for the athletic field at Occidental College in Eagle Rock, CA.

Heather creates her art in a teepee, which sits in her own backyard. For this project she forged each small piece at this location. She would then assemble the pieces on 4 x 8 sheets of plywood and bring them to Noble Forge where Phillip would forge all the pieces together, ensuring that the pieces were squared and straight. She shared, “It was so great to have someone help me on this big project, Phillip was able to do the hand forging and fabrication allowing me to gate2continue to be creative and focused.”

Another project, and one that is near and dear to her heart, is Adam’s Forge, for which she serves as the president. Adam’s Forge is a not for profit that is dedicated to “creating a thriving blacksmithing community through regular schedule of classes and events that inspires and supports aspiring artists, tradespeople and the community.” This volunteer-run organization was started in 2001 by the parents of Adam Leventhal, a blacksmith who lost his life to suicide. The museum and school are both housed in Adam’s blacksmith studio.

gate3Adam’s Forge fosters the blacksmith community by offering classes for those wishing to discover more about blacksmithing, as well as CBA (California Blacksmith Association) certification programs. They also offer project-oriented classes where students will create a candleholder, letter opener and more.

“The thing about the blacksmith community,” says Heather, “is that we all know it was a dying craft, therefore this community understands the importance of being generous in sharing techniques and helping each other to learn and grow.” The community champions collaboration more so than competition, as seen in the collaboration between Noble Forge’s Phillip Bowling and Heather McLarty whose partnership created the amazing gate at Occidental College.

Video Blacksmith Meets Real Blacksmith; A Day with Felicia Day

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We love the day that Felicia Day came by to visit and learn about the art of blacksmithing. She has appeared in shows like Supernatural and Eureka, and co-starred in Joss Whedon’s award winning Internet musical Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. Her web series, The Guild, has won numerous honors, most recently earning the PGA nomination for best web series in 2011. Her production company, Knights of Goods, produced a web series Dragon Age, which is a six-part webseries based on the BioWare video game series. In 2012 she launched a YouTube channel, Geek & Sundry, which attracted over a million fans. The company was sold to Legendary Entertainment in 2014.

We were excited to become the subject of her Flog, which she describes as a collection of things she wants to talk about and do. Unbeknownst to us, she loves blacksmithing, in the gaming world anyway; and she decided to share what blacksmiths do, as she puts it – “for realsies” – with her audience. Lucky for us, she learned about Noble Forge and came by to check us out.

Phillip, our real life Blacksmith, showed her the various equipment and tools necessary for the art of blacksmithing. Donned in safety gear, Felicia learned how to forge metal, using a one-inch square bar stock, which is not to be confused with an ingot – which are collected and smithed to create or improve items in one of Felicia’s favorite video games, Skyrim. The forge is very hot; Felicia was surprised to learn that it can get up to 2,000 – 2,500 degrees! Hence, the safety gear.

Felicia was an absolute delight! She enjoyed learning the basics of blacksmithing. She also learned some of the terms like chamfer, which is a symmetrical sloping surface at an edge or corner, and striker, a person that provides an extra set of hands, making it easier to adjust the piece being worked on and saving the blacksmith a lot of time – as well as, at times, a lot of frustration.

In the end, Felicia Day had successfully created her first ever blacksmithing project – a fireplace poker – and we were able to share what we do in this video! Thank you, Felicia, for spending time with Noble Forge!

A History on the Noble Brothers Foundry

Noble Forge Blacksmiths

Noble Brothers Foundry

Recently we received an inquiry as to whether or not we were somehow associated to the Noble Brothers Foundry, a large ironworks manufacturer based in Rome, Georgia, USA back in the 1850’s. Unfortunately, Noble Forge has no ties to the Noble Brothers Foundry but an investigation into the history seemed appropriate.

Cornwall Furnace by Noble Brothers Foundry

Ruins of Cornwall Furnace

The Noble Brothers Foundry helped shape history and produced parts associated with steam boat engines, furnaces, locomotives, and firearms (notably cannons) before, during and after the United States Civil War. The first Confederate cannon was made by Noble in Rome, from iron drawn from the hills of Cherokee County and smelted at Cornwall.

There is a story that says that James Noble was visiting a manufacturing exposition in Sydenham, England when he saw samples of some iron from the Round Mountains and decided he had to move there.  He and son James, natives of Cornwall, England, headed west and relocated to Rome, Georgia.  Apparently, the remains of the facility can still be seen today and more about how and what the Noble Brothers made can be found online or you can visit the historical sight of the old forge.  If your are a Civil War buff then this is a story worth looking into.