We can add hand-forged fireplace mantel straps and ironwork onto reclaimed beams. Whether it is simple metal straps, a Christmas stocking rod, corbels, or something more elaborate, our blacksmiths are up to the challenge. Using classic old, hammer and anvil techniques, this real handcraft adds such nice authenticity to wood beams that were hand worked with an ax over 100 years ago when pioneers settled these lands.
In 2009, our friend Steve Howell at Ballard Forge near Seattle, Washington originally created some great Greene and Greene style straps to join a pair of old 6×6 beams together. Since then, we have continued to craft more straps and create new designs with Steve at Ballard Forge as well as Wyatt Bienfang at WLB Blacksmith Shop near Minneapolis, Minnesota. We’d also like to give a shout out to Doug Lockhart in Ohio who does great ironwork as well. Nowadays, we see several folks following our lead. I guess imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. But as an artist, I urge everyone to respect creative work and purchase pieces from the original designers.
All of these metal straps are hand hammered and custom fit to each mantel. We usually use 3/16ths inch metal to give the straps an appropriate bulk for the size of the mantel. Our straps have a well-crafted, but very authentic look that only comes from a real blacksmith swinging a hammer. They acquire more color variation with the use of a genuine coal forge — not a gas forge. We strive for our products to look true and real — not machined. This is the real thing.
Metal Straps and Other Ideas
In the photographs, you’ll see single straps and double straps; forged rings and twisted rods. The blacksmiths we work with are exceptionally talented and have a stream of ideas a mile long. Give them some room to create and they step up to the call. If you have some ideas that you want to see realized on your mantel, send us an email or give us a call. We are happy to help.
Crafting a Mantel with Metal
Note, because everyone needs a different size mantel and the blacksmith work is relatively expensive, we almost always create ironwork mantels custom to the individual. While we may experiment from time to time with new ideas, it is pretty rare for us to have pre-made iron-strapped mantels on hand. Please contact us ideas and dimensions. Our turn around time is usually within 1-3 weeks for metalwork.
Once we understand the general look of the mantel and ironwork that you are trying to achieve, we look for a suitable mantel. You can browse mantel beams and mantel shelves that are already completed, or we can start from a raw beam. We have 100s of raw beams available — many of which are photographed and ready for convenient online selection. We will draw the mantel and metalwork up SketchUp so that we can make sure that we’re all on the same page and have the right proportions. Fixed pricing will be provided up front so that there are no surprises. From there, our blacksmiths will add the metal to your mantel. We then clean-up his work and apply a final finish. We take lots of pictures so that you can see our work. We ship via FedEx ($75 to $100) or LTL Truck Freight (~ $250), depending on the size of the mantel. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 888-350-4790 to discuss your specific project. (Note, we are a small mom and pop artisan shop. We don’t always catch the phone while working in our workshop. We do reply to emails every morning and evening. Thank you for your understanding.)