My husband Danny and I moved to France in February 2003 and spent the first 5 years working on our house renovation. Our wonderful French builders did all the major work, whilst we rubbed down walls, treated beams, tiled floors and decorated! At the same time we tackled our very overgrown walled piece of land and started landscaping and bit by bit turned it into a garden! Idyllic, Yes, but Danny realised that I needed something to occupy my spare time then he remembered the Metalcraft tools that I had always wanted.
We came back to UK phoned J& RC Wood who were kind enough to give us a demonstration of the Master range of tools. I now have a small business called fer forge a froid (cold wrought iron), my slogan “ if you have an idea and I can make it I will” and so far with the tools I have been able to do just that. I get invited to local artisan fairs and display my work in the local expo which brings in orders for anything from a house name sign to a window grille the great thing is that the work is always different.
The last two years I have used the mk3/3 scrolling tool to make the designs for gates ,porches, garden benches etc using steel rod 3mm – 6mm, flat bar steel ranging from 16mm x 4mm to 25mm x 6mm. Every scroll being identical is invaluable when you are making 3 metre long balcony panels The designs achievable with the scrolling machines are limitless and I have great fun exploring ideas with clients who want wrought iron work for staircases or balconies which when it’s finished is their own piece of art not something mass produced.
The rbr machine comes into its own for me when I make garden arches and log baskets it took me a wee while to get my circles right but I made a really great log basket from a failed circle, Iwas just too heavy handed at first, since I have made a circular gate for a client and window grills with a circular designs as the main theme so I guess I’ve got the hang of it now.
I have used the twister on quite a few jobs and as I do a display for the Tourist information each year it always amazes the audience that the metal stays the same length!
Thanks to Metalcraft tools I've now discovered the enjoyment of making useful but artistic items and turned this into a thriving business. Unfortunately, due to changes in France's taxation system that punishes small businesses like mine, I have gone into temporary retirement but still get a lot of pleasure from using Metalcraft tools on projects for our home and also for friends.
Joe Marley a Youth and Community worker at the Kingston Youth Centre recently shared his thoughts on the benifits of Met... Read More