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Weekend Adventures: Pewtersmith Apprentice For A Day

I’d not gone out for adventures with The Crew in long while due to exams and the studying for it. I missed out on a few exciting ones, much to my dismay. With exams all done, I can finally go out and enjoy myself.


I met up with the Adventure Crew, Avariel, Joelyn, Raven Silvers and Sarah, for an early morning jaunt to the game store and then to a comic store before going to meet Arrch, Sarah’s friend who was leaving that evening for home. It was his last day in Singapore so the adventure choice was his.

We ended up at the Royal Selangor Pewter store on Clarke Quay to attend their School of Hardknocks, which allowed non-artistic people like me, to try out pewtersmithing.

We met Arrch at Clarke Quay and made our way to the pewter store. It wasn’t too far but it was a really, really hot day and having to walk through the afternoon sun was not exactly enjoyable.

Raven had managed to obtain a voucher booklet of touristy things for each of us, so instead of the usual SGD30 for the pewtersmith apprenticeship, it was SGD28. Not bad huh?

set up
Photo courtesy of Seriously Sarah

The lot of us were herded into the workshop, where the tools and aprons were set up. We dropped our bags and put on the aprons provided. Some of them mentioned that it was like being back in Design & Technology class again, due to the blue aprons. I didn’t have the chance to experience D&T like the rest of them as I went to school when the old gender bias was still intact; girls only took home economics while boys took D&T.

Photo courtesy of Seriously Sarah

After putting on our aprons, the instructor showed us how to use the tools, like the letter engraving tools, the hammer and the mould to make the bowl. It wasn’t difficult actually, to hammer the pewter disc into shape, especially since the mould was really easy to follow. The only thing that we needed to remember was not to hammer your fingers, which I managed to. I have a tendency to do that, so I guess it’s a good thing that I didn’t do anything involving power tools when I was in school.

school of hardknocks certapron

After hammering our bowls into shape, we were told to wash and scrub it in one direction only, to give the beautiful lines that are unique to pewter works. I was rather proud of my tiny bowl (or half a boob protector or a large cod piece, depending on whom you ask). It may not be entirely smooth, the engraving was not so well done by yours truly, it was still my bowl, hammered mostly into shape by me.

At the end of the session, we were given certificates to show that we did it! We even got to keep the aprons too. They provided us with a small foam bag to store our bowls in and paper bags to carry them home.

pewter pendant

In the paper bag, there was also a pewter coin that was given to us. All it needs is a strong or a leather thong and I can use it as a pendant. Cool huh?

I wouldn’t mind going back again since I want to do a better job with the engraving than I did with this one. The engraving I did was crooked and not hammered in enough. Also, it was fun hammering the metal into shape. You can actually vent out a lot of your frustrations into that sheet of metal and create something pretty. This is definitely a recommended activity if you want to create something beautiful with your hands and have a lot of fun hitting something.

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