It’s been a very event filled few months with trips out of the workshop to yet another fruitful International Living History Fair at Bruntingthorpe, a first time exhibit at Hatfield House during their internationally acclaimed crafts weekend for the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust, work for Black Knight Historical at the Stonham Barns.
Additionally in the workshop things have been getting increasingly busy as my wife has now joint me in the workshop on Wednesday and Fridays starting her own metal worksing business; creating artwork, ornamation and contemporary jewelry. Orders have grown as the year has progressed, a hopeful indication that the pains of the recession are easing for some.
As well as this I have enjoyed writing a number of short articles for the Medieval Warfare magazine. The first of which has just been published recently about greaves.
Finally I am constantly fortuntate enough to be able to continue training under Master Armour David Hewitt of White Rose Armouries.
In the immediate future there are plans for visits to a number of the UK’s private and public armouries and a couple of handling sessions that I hope to photograph.
I am now on Twitter, my plan is to drop up useful links, armour based items I find interesting and anything else that comes through the workshop that might be of interest. You can follow me on Twitter through the icon at the bottom of the page or by going here: https://twitter.com/greenleafworks
I continue to use Facebook and LinkedIn for other work. So please be sure to follow me on one of these if you want to stay up to date.
I enjoyed a great time at the market this year meeting lots a new and old faces as well as taking on a good amount of new work. The new site was a little rough around the edges with some difficulties with lighting along the wall edges and port-a-loos on site, but I think that the staff there did a great job in attempting to assauge our worries and demonstrate that the people in charge of the site have big plans for the next April based market. Including changes to the site, 450 place car park, event rooms, new reception area etc … So I am looking forward to seeing all that in place for the next market.
The last couple of months have seen a slow expansion of the workshop into the next door workspace as well. The removal of the partition wall, changing the forge flue, electrics and lights has been expertly handled by Steve (Sutherland Property Services). The expansion has become necerssary for the business but also as Connor will be moving in to do Blacksmithing over the next few months as things continue to grow. Over the next few weeks I plan on a second gas fed forge, planishing tools and grineders to be added to the collection.
Not the best temperature to be firing up the forge to get things done, on this the hottest day of the year so far … but still, it’s fun!
Today has been a day set aside for a couple more website updates and the gladiatorial helmets I have been meaning to finish for a little while now, with plenty of water stops along the way in this heat. I don’t think that the Roman’s had future armourers in mind when they made the gladiatorial helmets now at the National museum in Naples. With every part of the face plates curved in every way possible, it’s been a little bit of an event to recreate the shapes in steel and after some trimming and shaping on Wednesday this week, with the addition of the central rib running up the front of the visor, secutor helmet one of three should be complete.
Tomorrow should bring a slightly cooler, 14th century gauntlet refurb … phew!
Today a lot of ‘hammer time’ has been lost to the website updates. I am learning that WordPress is our friend!
The intended use of this blog is really to give occasional updates on the work being done in the workshop for customers to see their work being made or see some of the processes that go into making armour in the workshop. When I come across a good idea, useful supplier or anything else that I think might be of use to people in general I will also look to drop them up here and Facebook.
Currently a lot of my time is being spent between expanding the workshop, changing the website and getting some time to make things. I’m fortunate enough at the moment to be doubling the size of the workshop into next door, the wall has been knocked down, but movement across the threshold is slow as work seems to always get in the way, but the process is great none the less! (I should also mention my land lord John, who has been a diamond in letting this happen!).