Back in October 2020 Charlotte was awarded the South House Silver Workshop Trust Scholarship and given the choice to spend a month of intensive training with either master silversmith Rod Kelly or Brett Payne. A tough choice indeed! However, Charlotte saw the potential to complement her existing practice and the training she did through the CBS in Asymmetric Raising in 2018 and Tray Sinking in 2019, and in February this year spent a month in the workshop of Brett Payne, in Sheffield, learning the method of hot forging silver and strengthening her skill in raising.
The first task was to forge a silver spoon from a single billet of 6mm thick sterling silver, a good exercise to introduce the different techniques within forging. For the first spoon, a soup spoon, Charlotte and Brett worked through each stage of the process together, taking two days from lump of silver to polished spoon. Brett then set the challenge for Charlotte to repeat the process alone and produce a serving spoon in a day. The next task was learning how to control a taper while forging out a 16mm round silver bar, changing the section from round to square and back to round without creating folds in the metal.
The central project in Charlotte’s scholarship was the creation of a silver chocolate pot, an object that Charlotte had long wanted to make and one that incorporated a handle, an application where Charlotte saw potential for the incorporation of forging in her own work going forward. The creation of the body for the chocolate pot through hand raising also introduced the technique of back raising, used to create a neck in a vessel. The handle was forged from 6mm thick sterling silver to a taper that wraps around the mid-point of the neck and protrudes, as is traditional, from the right side of the pot.
This scholarship was made possible by the generous support of The South House Silver Trust, The Goldsmiths’ Company, The South Square Trust, Argex Ltd, The Weavers’ Company, The Pearson Foundation, The Saunders Scholarship, Jamie MacDonald Kelly, Rod Kelly, Brett Payne, Karin Paynter and several other anonymous donors. Look out for the chocolate pot on Charlotte’s stand next time you visit her at a show. She hopes to be exhibiting again in 2022.