What influenced you into getting into armouring?
My particular natural talent is in making things, preferably three dimensional.
Armour is one of the most intriguing and beautiful choices of things to make. It
can have all the refinement and elegance of fine sculpture, but it also presents
the additional challenge of requiring the specific function of allowing the full
range of motion of the human body. Its association with a very romantic (though
perhaps overly romanticized) period of history also draws me to it.
When did you begin armouring, and how did you start?
I began armouring about eight years ago (ed: c 1991?).
I saw some basic plate items in an SCA
display at a local art fair and for the first time I became aware that people
still made such things...why not myself? I joined the SCA, learned a bit about
wearing and fighting in armour and a few of the basic methods of construction.
Mostly, though, I've been self educated in the process of making armour, using a
trial and error approach to developing new techniques. I've thrown away a lot of
hopeless failures for every successful technique I've come up with.
What type of research do you do for your pieces?
I work from photos of historical pieces, as well as contemporary artwork.
Fortunately, there are numerous books available which are kind enough to provide
several different views of some historical pieces, as well as views of the
When pictures are unavailable, textual descriptions of armour can be helpful.
Discussing techniques with other armourers can also be very useful.
How far are you willing to extrapolate from authentic pieces?
I don't mind creating new designs based on historical ones. It's not always
necessary to slavishly reproduce historical pieces, though that can be an
interesting challenge in itself. There really was no standardization of armour
designs, so for every existing design you know there must have been inumerable
variations, experimentations, etc.
What is your favorite period?
This tends to change, depending on how long I've been working in a particular
period. Right now I'm enjoying working out the various styles of Roman helmets
and armour. I also find the 13th and 14th centuries had some fascinating forays
into early plate design. Just look at the variety of bascinets!
What is the favorite piece/ suit you have made?
I've never truly achieved my full expectations in any piece, so my favorite has
yet to occur. I keep improving my skills, and maybe someday I'll make something
I'm truly happy with.
Do you have an apprenticeship program?
I have employees helping me in shop, which I suppose is much the same thing.
What is the one piece of advice you would give all starting armourers if you
could grab them by the neck and scream something into their face, that would be
forever burned onto their soul?
When you weld a plate on one surface it gets hot on the opposite surface too.
What are some of your other interests/hobbies?
Sometimes, late at night, I have time to play on my Playstation. I also do a fair
amount of graphic design on my website, but that hardly qualifies as a hobby.