A Blazing BlacksmitHER – Hulmis Tapola

Blazing BlacksmitHERs are ladies that are forging their own path in blacksmithing and sharing their story.

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader” John Quincy Adams

Name

Hulmis Tapola

Where in the world are you?

Finland

How did you start blacksmithing? Did you take classes?

I started when I was 16 and studying horse grooming. I got in a farriery course and an opportunity opened up to try forging. It was love at first sight! I did 2 years of farriery studies and now I have done 3 years in Ikata College of Crafts and Designs. I am about to graduate as a metal artisan in few months. I have been an apprentice for 3 metal artists, master bladesmith Hankala, master blacksmith at Häijään Paja and at Jurkka Design.

Are you a beginner, hobby or professional blacksmith?

Beginner blacksmith

What is your favorite blacksmithing technique? Even if you are beginner, what do you enjoy doing the most?

My favorite part is when I manage to do something through for the first time. It is better when it has taken a few try outs before getting the first grip of a new skill. I also love the part when an awesome idea rushes through me and I run with pen and paper to light up the forge.

Specific favorite technique would be forge welding, every time I do it and sparkles fly, burning tiny holes to my clothes, I feel like there is strength in me to do what it takes to learn.

Do you have a favorite tool? What is it?

Oh, this is difficult one! There are so many I like, definitely those that are in good shape and do their job…. I’m going to say welding pliers, those that have lock-mechanism on them. Or maybe the anvil!

What is the worst thing about blacksmithing?

Getting something in my eyes! I have learned to wash eyeballs, that is handy, but seriously, those are moments I dislike so much. And burning hands, too, when it stops me for a while from what I do.

I get often offensive comments, but the more I learn about blacksmithing, the more I see we are all just here to learn and those who want to lash out would do it anyways. I can’t be anything more from their point of view than a trigger. On the flip-side of that, I’ve met some awesome creative personas, too!

Are you a member of a blacksmithing association? If so, which one? What does it do for you?

Not at the moment

Do you have a website? If so, enter it here

https://www.facebook.com/hotandcoldupnorth

Do you have anything else you would like to add?

Love and hugs to all of you who are on this journey of on-going learning!

Hulmis's Knives Hulmis at the forge (640x480)

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