Blacksmithing and metalworking

Forging a coat rail with James Price

Ref: SWE08834

Suitable for all


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About this course

Learn to forge a shaker style coat rail using traditional hand forged techniques to make hooks that are then fixed onto a back plate. You will be encouraged to think creatively about form and function to make your design unique, and will be shown basic hand forging techniques. Once the hooks are made explore options for a back plate and how to attach the hooks through welding, riveting or other means.

Course Description

This course offers a rewarding and accessible insight into the blacksmiths craft through designing and making a shaker style coat rail.

You will be encouraged to think about form and function and shown basic hand forging techniques. The course is also suitable for more experienced learners as the complexities of the design can be adapted to suit different skill levels.

Although a coat rail sounds fairly simple it offers the chance for lots of creativity within a clearly defined structure.

You will be shown basic examples of hooks and how to make them. Students will then have the option to adapt these designs, copy them or completely reinvent them into something completely original.

Once the hooks are made we will explore options for a back plate and how to attach the hooks through welding, riveting or other means.

Whether traditional, contemporary, shaker or sculptural hanging your coat up will never be the same again.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • All stock metal and fuel costs are included in the course fee for this course.
  • Leather aprons, work gloves, safety spectacles, ear defenders, welding helmets and goggles are all provided.
  • You may wish to bring your own, if you have them (if for example you have particularly large or small hands, your own work gloves are likely to be a better fit).

What students need to bring

  • You will need clothing suitable for workshop use, together with steel toe cap boots. Soft training shoes with synthetic fabric uppers do not offer enough protection. Please note that cotton or wool clothing is preferable to nylon or other synthetics. A pair of cotton jeans is far more protective than a pair of nylon trousers. Shorts do not provide necessary protection.

Available to buy

  • Items of drawing equipment are available for purchase from the College Craft Shop. Other materials are provided in the Forge.


James Price

James Price is a blacksmith and designer, combining traditional forging with a contemporary aesthetic. Trained at Brighton University and the Centre for Rural Crafts, Hereford, he established his forge in 2001.


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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