Doug Carmichael, Metal Smith
Welcome! My name is Doug Carmichael and I've worked as an artisan metal smith professionally since 1975 at my off-grid studio and forge in rural Northern California. My mentor was the master smith and innovator Carl Jennings. Carl took me from my background as a mechanical engineer to that of the artisan I am today. My work has been exhibited at many juried shows as well as in the National Ornamental Metal Museum of Nashville, Tennessee. I am a charter member of the California Blacksmith Association and I also belong to the Artists-Blacksmiths Association of North America. If you have a need for a unique hand-forged piece for your home or business, or are simply looking for a one-of-a-kind gift for a loved one, give me a call. Hopefully, through this website, I will be able to convey to you the craft I love and help you in your search...
I have a selection of popular hand-forged pieces I try to keep in stock for immediate purchase. Click on a category photo below to see the selections available.
Custom Forge Work
Looking for a unique gift or architectural statement? Custom work can be negotiated from a simple drawing.
Please note, custom work is not cheap!
Examples of previous work include lighting fixtures, lamps, fireplace fixtures, unique coat hooks and stands, antique reproductions, ornamental grill work, gates and railings.
A reasonable fee must be requested for details and quotations from submitted drawings.
A downpayment will be requested before the start of forge work.
Care of Forged Iron Pieces
For the work shown on these pages, two finish processes are used -- conventional and polychrome.
For a conventional finish, when a forge piece is completed, it is plunged into linseed oil while still hot. The resultant (black) finish is fairly stable, but may oxidize over time depending upon the environment.
The polychrome finish process begins with an acid wash which is then neutralized with baking soda. After wire brushing the piece, it is heated once more to ~700 degrees Fahrenheit. This brings out a spectrum of colors. Once heated, it is then plunged into linseed oil, similar to the conventional treatment. A polychrome finished piece will retain this coloration pretty much indefinitely unless it is allowed to be in a humid or corrosive environment. Within such environments, the coloration will fade and the iron will naturally oxidize to a brown patina over time.
To care for a forged piece, it should be rubbed with a cloth saturated in Pledge Orange Oil once every year or so. This will clean the piece as well as to prevent rust and preserve the colors or developed patina. If the piece is in a humid environment, more frequent applications may be necessary. Please note that this treatment is not effective for outdoor pieces. Also, note that the polychrome finish itself is not intended for outdoor pieces, nor where the air is corrosive (e.g. salt air from coastal climates).
If you do live in a salt environment, consider the 'conventional' finish, ordering with a powder coat paint or having the piece forged out of copper.
Some of my work can be seen / purchased at:
45052 Main St. / Mendocino CA
The Blacksmith Shop (& Gallery)
455 Main St. / Ferndale CA
Blue Sky Gallery
21 S. Main St. / Willits CA
Custom work and purchase inquiries should be directed to:
Doug Carmichael / Sherwood Forge
6850 3rd Gate Rd. / Willits CA 95490
or send email to:
Please allow a few days for a response.
Please note that I do not accept credit cards.
Copyright © 2010 Doug Carmichael / Sherwood Forge.
All rights reserved.
Information in this document is subject to change without notice.
Last modified: March 28, 2010