Saturday, January 31, 2009

What Smith Are You?

A blacksmith works with iron and steel. The ancient traditional tool of the blacksmith is a forge or smithy, which is a furnace designed to allow compressed air (through a bellows) to superheat the inside, allowing for efficient melting, soldering and annealing of metals. Today, this tool is still widely used by blacksmiths as it was traditionally.

A bladesmith forges knives, swords, and other blades.

A coppersmith, or brownsmith, works with copper.

A goldsmith is a metalworker who specializes in working with gold and other precious metals, usually in modern times to make jewelry. Historically goldsmiths have also made flatware, platters, goblets, decorative and serviceable utensils, and ceremonial or religious items, but the rising prices of precious metals have curtailed the making of such items to a large degree. A goldsmith should be skilled in delicate manual work, have creative imagination and artistic flair, be good at drawing and designing, and be interested in metals and minerals.

The term, metalsmith, often refers to artisans and craftpersons who practice their craft in many different metals, including gold, copper and silver.

A pewtersmith works with pewter.

Traditionally a silversmith, or brightsmith, mostly made "silverware" (cutlery, table flatware, bowls, candlesticks and such). Only in more recent times has silversmithing become mainly work in jewellery, as much less solid silver tableware is now handmade. Unlike blacksmiths, silversmiths do not shape the metal while it is red-hot but instead, work it at room temperature with gentle and carefully placed hammerblows.

tinsmith, tinner, or tinker works with light metal (such as tinware) and can refer to someone who deals in tinware.

A whitesmith works with white metal (tin) and can refer to someone who polishes or finishes the metal rather than forging it.


Lisa said...

Hi there! What a great post! I learned quite a bit! I had a chance to peruse your site and just love your work. I really admire jewelry makers who work in metal, it has always intrigued and intimidated me.

Tina Cowan said...

So many kinds Of Smithers and interesting subject. I like them all except for the Bladesmith- scary to me. I will remain as a Quiltsmith for a while.

ChezChani said...

Beadsmith? Peyotesmith? Pokersmith? Dessertsmith?

Anonymous said...

Very interesting list Theresa....I'd not heard of all these before.....I must be a jewelrysmith....although I do play a bit at silversmith work too. I know someone who is a blacksmith and makes wonderful things--table, candleabra, etc----beautiful but I don't think I could stand the heat! Teri Twitter: Teri_B

A Beaded Affair said...

My husband won't let me play with fire, lol. So I guess for now I must be a beadsmith....

csmithsmithusa said...

My name is Catherine Smith.
I own If
you haven't already guessed,
I live and work in New York
City and I make custom quilts.

Catherine Smith