Watching a craftsman make a lucky horseshoe in Bulgaria

While visiting the amazing Etar Architectural Ethnographic Complex in Gabrovo, (read all about the complex here) I was fortunate enough to spend some time with one of the local craftsmen. This craftsman was a Bulgarian blacksmith and carpenter and an expert in cart-smithery (someone who makes carts). In the 18th century, carts were used for transportation and Gabrovo in Bulgaria was a centre for cart-smithery at this time.

In addition to the traditional style carts, the craftsman’s workshop was full of wonderful handmade souvenirs that visitors could buy. I was looking at the lucky horseshoes made of iron and he asked if I’d like to watch how he makes them. Of course I wanted to! He agreed he’d make one just for me and I could video the whole process! Seeing how a blacksmith in Bulgaria would have worked in the 18th and 19th century was incredible. It was a real honour to watch such a skilled man working and it was even more of an honour that he made a souvenir lucky horseshoe especially for me!

You can watch my video of this charming and talented man in action. Sorry it’s not perfectly filmed as I was a little unprepared, but I hope you still enjoy it!

And here is the end result, my very own handmade lucky horseshoe!

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