Iron in the Hat anyone?

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Martin Pansch
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:44 am
Location: Young America, MN

Iron in the Hat anyone?

Unread post by Martin Pansch » Thu Dec 12, 2013 4:37 pm

I have noted that a number of other blacksmithing organizations and at least one online forum I lurk at (Don Fogg's bladesmithing forum) will have occasional Iron-(or knife)-in-the-hat events. For those of you unfamiliar with the concept a theme is chosen, say trivets, and anyone who wants to participate will make a trivet of their own design by whatever deadline is set. Everyone who is participating get their name put in a hat and lots are draw. Person A gets Person B's. Person B get Person C's, etc. I have noticed that when people know a fellow smith is going to get the piece they tend to stretch their skills. Small groups of smiths often get together to work on their individual projects, feeding off each other’s experience and creativity. The people who participate really appreciate the item they go home with as they have a shared experience of making one themselves. And the whole experience can lead to a greater feeling of community in the folks who participated.

Far from just being a Margaret Mead-like observation of blacksmith anthropology I actually do have a point. I would like to try this with our group. I figured I would propose the idea on all our means of communication, the web forum, email reflector, Forum if there is space and the old fashion oral tradition at this weekend’s Christmas party. I want to cast a wide net, including both people who can physically make it to meetings and our folks with a more virtual presence.

I am throwing this out as a teaser to see if enough people are interested to make it worth trying and solicit ideas for what the project should be. I am thinking items that are simple enough that beginners won’t shy away from participating yet offer opportunity for experienced smiths to really throw down and show off their chops.

I am thinking the due date should be set in June. Enough warm months for those of us with 3-season shops to work on it yet far enough away from the fall conference to not interfere with your efforts for the gallery, auction, and whatever contest the program committee might dream up for this year.

And if this doesn’t pan out, no worries. I have another anthropological themed project to try. Start a Cargo Cult! I’ll build a long runway out on the farm and wait for the giant bird to bring me gifts of “tin fish” and orange soda! Course up in Minnesota it would probably be lutefisk and beer.

Anyway, I am interested in hearing your comments, ideas, and creative insults.

Martin

Martin Pansch
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:44 am
Location: Young America, MN

Re: Iron in the Hat anyone?

Unread post by Martin Pansch » Thu Mar 06, 2014 10:26 pm

For those of you who only lurk here and don't read the monthly Forum or attend meeting the Iron in the Hat is going forward. Below is a reprint of what was printed in the forum in case you want to participate.

The Guild of Metalsmiths’ Iron in the Hat

Folks,

I would like to invite and encourage you to participate in the Guild of Metalsmiths’ Iron in the Hat. After soliciting ideas from a number of members on the subject and organization this is what the event is going to look like.

How it will run: Everyone who wants to participate will make something in the chosen theme. You will have from now until the June membership meeting to work on it. At that point everyone who has entered has their name put in a hat. Person A gets Person B’s item. B gets C’s. All the way until A gets Z’s. You don’t have to make it to the June meeting to participate, just let me know you are “in” and send a photo along of your finished piece so people can see what you made.

The subject is tools. Any kind of tool you want to make. Hammers, tongs, struck tools, guillotine tools, scrolling forks, etc. It can be forged, fabricated, cast, ground, whittled or made in any other manner. You can choose to either make something you have never done before and have been looking for an excuse to try or go for something you are comfortable making and try to outdo yourself. You don’t have to make everything from scratch, repurposing an existing tool is acceptable, but keep in mind that part of the purpose of this it to get people to stretch their abilities and creativity.

The other purpose is for people to feed, vampire like, off each other’s creativity and ability. To that end I would encourage people to get together to work on their projects together. Once the glacier’s recede this spring I’ll host a weekend out at my place for anyone who wants to come out to western Siberia.

I am excited to see what people come with.

Martin Pansch
blacksmithingyeti@gmail.com
612-599-4762

Jim Ericksen
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:18 pm
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Re: Iron in the Hat anyone?

Unread post by Jim Ericksen » Sat Mar 08, 2014 5:52 pm

sweet !!

I'm in

jim

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