Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fold Forming Metal

So I had the idea to create fold formed leaves out of copper. Fold them in half, open them and hammer out organic leaf shapes. Sounds easy enough. Is there some trick I need to know before I start whaling away on a piece of metal? To the internet I goooooooooo.

And found this guy, Charles Lewton-Brain. Give yourself a few minutes over there, I'll wait.

Isn't that incredible? He has a book, which I would love to read. But I need to put that off for a while until we are caught up with bills again. And I need a vise. And a raising hammer. And a peen hammer. And a rolling mill while I'm at it. Look at this photo of hammers. Am I crazy for thinking it is beautiful and exciting?

This is my favorite quote by Charles (you don't mind if I call you Charles, do ya, Chuck?);

"I made a decision a long time ago, particularly with fold-forming, that I wanted to give it away, so it could be used by as many people as possible. The secrecy shrouding so many techniques is evidence of small minds trying to protect small properties."

I for one, am grateful for those masters who have come before me, willing to write, explain, photograph and share what knowledge they have. If you share your gift you have the power to change lives. If you keep it to yourself, you have the power to influence no one but yourself for 60 to 90 years.

Here is a link to his pieces for sale.


  1. You better watch out, you'll become hooked! I love fold forming and it just has a kind of satisfaction for me to be able to pound the metal and have something immediately appear.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Sorry, only removed my comment cos it had a mistake in it!
    What I said was: These are gorgeous. Folding is a wonderful technique in felting too. Adds shape and texture.
    Love it!

  4. Fold Forming is fun stuff! (ARgh! I want my metal studio back!)

  5. No you are not crazy for thinking the hammers are beautiful and exciting! Just think of the beauty they can create along with your capable hands!!

  6. Your new art form is simply beautiful, Can we talk,Please email me?

  7. Oh, uhm, yes...excuse me while I lose myself in that hammer picture! It is indeed lovely! And I'm becoming more and more enchanted with fold forming too. Your work, as always, is amazing!

  8. LOVED this short blog much wisdom here..and those hammers..well made me hungry! Oh if I could get my hands on a such a fantastic collection! The quote from Charles..well ..awesome.

  9. i so very much love fold forming as well - and admire both charles lewton-brain and your... that technique has allowed me to inch closer to nature with metal (and it really is just so fun to pry it open with a clam knife!)


Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my blog, it means a lot to me.