We are glad that you are here! When you leave our website today, our hope is that you will think differently of iron and it's unexpected uses and applications. We invite you visualize the effort - toil really - that is required to shape iron into these designs. We invite you to imagine the delicate, calculated violence necessary to create timeless beauty that will last a lifetime and beyond. And most of all, we invite you to consider hand-forged ironwork as an effective way to add singular, functional elegance to your home or business.
The images that we have included here give a clear impression of the sort of things that we create for our clients; and we assume that they have intrigued you, because you are still reading!
Photos can explain “what” we create, but can say little of “how”, and nothing at all of “why”... Our name, Essential Craftsman implies an answer to this question.
The last decades of the 19th century, and the first part of the 20th saw the rise of the “Arts and Crafts” movement and the debut of a new aesthetic in furniture, decor and architecture which became known as “Craftsman” and still persists today. We admire and incorporate elements of this style into virtually every commission we produce. Whether or not a particular piece can be properly designated as “craftsman”, every piece is motivated by the values that produced the Craftsman aesthetic. I will let two of the iconic giants of the Arts and Crafts movement explain:
“To give people pleasure in the things that they must perforce use, that is one great office of decoration; to give people pleasure in the things that they must perforce make, that is the other use of it”. -William Morris
“Als Ik Kan”- Gustave Stickley
As it turns out, Mr. Stickley would imprint on every piece that left his shop these words, Als Ik Kan, a Flemish phrase meaning...To the best of my ability!
For the overwhelming majority of recorded human history, the blacksmith was the essential craftsman in every community. Everything that civilization required - every tool, implement, utensil and fastener came out of his fire - off of his anvil. We love our part in keeping this ancient, honorable craft alive. It gives us pleasure to make singular, functional elegant things, that bring pleasure to others in their everyday use. And to do it, Als Ik Kan.