Heritage Crafts and the Museum of Making collaborate to save tinsmithing

26th May 2022  |  ANNOUNCEMENTS

Karl SchmidtA unique tinsmithing masterclass will be held in September with generous support from The Worshipful Company of Tin Plate Workers alias Wire Workers and the Heritage Crafts Endangered Crafts Fund.

Tinsmithing is listed as a critically endangered craft on the Red List of Endangered Crafts. With very few remaining tinsmiths in the UK, we are bringing traditional tinsmith Karl Schmidt all the way from South Dakota to deliver a five day masterclass at the Museum of Making, Derby.

Endangered Crafts Manager Mary Lewis said:

“We are thrilled to be working in partnership with Derby Museums and The Worshipful Company of Tin Plate Workers alias Wire Workers. This funding will allow us to pass tinsmithing skills on to the next generation of makers and supports our mission to further the appreciation of heritage craft skills as a vital part of the cultural life of the UK.”

Using tools and techniques of 19th century tinsmiths, students will learn how to lay out projects using patterns, cut and shape tin plate, and assemble shaped tinplate pieces into items they can take home, such as a tin cup or tankard, a tin sconce, tin ornaments and icicles, cake/biscuit cutters or a lantern.

Students will make multiple items, each one building on previous skills and techniques and gradually increasing in complexity over the course of the five-day workshop. They will learn how to develop patterns, workshop safety, how to use basic tinsmith’s tools and stakes, how to operate hand-crank machines, soldering, traditional construction techniques and more, all applied to specific creative tasks. The workshop will give participants a first-hand understanding of tinsmithing as a recognised heritage craft.

Tinsmithing partners

Tinsmithing Masterclass

Where: Museum of Making, Silk Mill Lane, Derby DE1 3AF
When: 12 to 16 September, 10am to 4pm (PAID PLACES FULLY BOOKED) OR 19 to 23 September, 10am to 4pm (PAID PLACES FULLY BOOKED)
Cost: £250 (two free bursary places available on application – enquire by 29 July)

If you feel that you would benefit from this training but can’t afford to fund your own place, please get in touch with [email protected]. We will assess applicants based on their financial need and how their skills will help to safeguard the critically endangered craft of tinsmithing for the future.

For more information about the course or the bursaries, click here or email Heritage Crafts Endangered Crafts Manager Mary Lewis at [email protected].