Our visit to
Old Newbury Crafters
April 22, 2002
Each piece of flatware is literally made by hand. To demonstrate, Mr. Blake invited us to watch as he began to make a spoon in the Oakleaf pattern. He took a single bar of sterling silver and began hammering. He explained that while hammering with his right hand, he was moving the silver with his left hand to get the effect that he wanted. He switched to the smaller surface side of his hammer to begin shaping the bowl.
The repetitive hammering causes a great deal of stress on the silver. To maintain malleability, the silver must be annealed from time to time during the hammering process. Mr. Blake took us over to the stones onto which he placed the spoon-in-process to heat it until it turned red then dipped it quickly into a cold bucket of water.