About the Artist
who we work with
how to commission a project
how we build a drive way gate
"That's stupid, Dad. Horses don't wear shoes."
The response which Michael, then 19 years old, gave to his father who suggested that he enroll at Midwest Horseshoeing School in Macomb, IL. Following his 5 year horseshoeing apprenticeship with Bill Mark of Antioch, Michael started his own Farrier business. Inspired by metal art in stores and catalogs, he began making items using his horseshoeing forge and anvil. He found true enjoyment in the process, and received good responses toward the work.
While on a trip out west, Michael took an arbitrary turn out of the mountains into Boulder, Colorado, and noticed a small building with a sign that said "Blacksmith Shop." Curious, he stopped in and introduced himself as a horseshoer from Chicago. The owner, Scott Fredenburg, told him that he'd earned his MFA from Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Michael asked, "Masters in what?" Scott said, "Blacksmithing, of course."
Several years later, Michael married Christine. While discussing plans for their future, she asked him if he'd ever considered going to college. She explained to him that a friend of hers told her about Blacksmithing classes at her alma mater--SIU Carbondale. Excited about the idea, he told her about meeting the Blacksmith in Colorado. It must have been divine inspiration. After much prayer and discussion they decided to quit their jobs, sell their house, and move to Carbondale, where Michael (then age 28) could pursue his Fine Arts degree in Blacksmithing.
Michael Migala, Owner
Michael also had the good fortune to start working for John Medwedeff, owner of Medwedeff Forge & Design, who had received his MFA in Blacksmithing from SUIC. During Michael's 5 year employment, he learned to fully appreciate fine craftsmanship and the beauty of good design.
AND Michael and Christine became parents of Nicholas and Emily!
Eventually, the Migalas moved to Jacksonville, Florida, where Michael worked at Wonderland Products. Like Medwedeff Forge & Design, Wonderland Products emphasizes quality craftsmanship in every project. At both companies, he was exposed to outstanding blacksmithing projects that constantly challenged his skills and opened his eyes to new materials and techniques. Michael developed a plan to open his own Blacksmith Shop, and returning to the Chicago area was the obvious choice.
Migala Metal Designs began its' operations in July, 2005, Producing hand-forged custom metal work including railings, drive gates, and fire screens and accessories.
Creating award winning Projects together with...
Benvenuti & Stein
Deborah Rogers Design, Inc.
Gooch Design Studio, LLC
Howard Holtzman & Associates
Hummel Construction, LLC
Lambright Woodworking, LLC
Legacy Custom Homes, LLC
LG Development Group
Lowell Management Services, Inc.
Morgante-Wilson Architects, Ltd.
Phillip Sassano Design, Inc.
Robert J. Neylan Architects
Seven Oaks Design Build, LLC
Traditional Concepts, Inc.
Z + O Architecture + Interiors
Migala Metal Designs is committed to making the process of creating custom metalwork as gratifying as possible.
We invite you to learn how we take your ideas and turn them into beautiful metalwork.
· Initial Phone Call: When you call, we try to get as much information about the project as possible. Send us a fax or an email so we can review photos of the site or any architectural prints that you have available.
· Estimates: We are often asked to give an estimate for a general concept or idea without having any actual designs or plans. "How much does a table (or driveway gate, or fireplace screen) cost?" It is important to understand that custom work opens up many different design possibilities that cover a wide range of prices. Unfortunately, we are not able to give an estimate without a design; we would only be guessing. In order to give you an accurate quote, we will need design and location specifications.
· Location Visit: After our initial phone call, we schedule a visit to your location to discuss designs and take preliminary measurements.
· Design Creation: If a specific design does not exist, then we will create one. In order to do this, we may invest many hours or sometimes days in research and design. It is often helpful if you have examples of design ideas available that appeal to you. Whether these are magazine pictures or other photographs, or even specific words that convey your designs ideas, all of this will help us create a design that you will be proud of. We strive to work closely with you throughout the design process. Sometimes we will provide quick sketches to confirm the direction of the design or sample pieces that demonstrate a special texture or finish.
· Retainer: Professionals such as architects, financial planners, landscape designers etc, are paid for the time they spend developing a plan. In the same way, we also must charge for our design services. The amount of the design fee is based on a general understanding of the time and expense involved in creating the design.
· Budget: Another consideration for the client is the budget. If you ask us to create the design for you, it's important for you to communicate your budget so that we design within it. Spending your money and our time designing a piece of custom metalwork that does not fit your budget is not productive for either of us.
· Design Proposal: Once the designs are completed, we will present them to you with a proposal. After confirming the designs and terms, we ask you to sign the proposal and return it with the deposit. At that time we may return to the job site for specific measurements and then begin construction. Jobs are scheduled according to order of deposit received.
MIGALA METAL DESIGNS retains the right to use the designs or variations of in future projects and promotions.
We are happy to answer any questions you may have about any part of the process. At MIGALA METAL DESIGNS, we pledge to develop a working relationship with you based on trust and professionalism. We are confident that through this interaction you will be pleased with the final results.
28 - 29
Drive Gate Drawing
Center line spacing
Piles of forged scrolls
First scrolls in place
Begin next batch of scrolls
Add top scrolls
Ready to weld
Scrolls in frame
Now make another one just like it
Ready for sandblasting
Fabricate hinge post
Check placement onsite
Must be plumb!
Posts are ready
Gates are ready
All packed up
A good day
©2017 MIGALA METAL DESIGNS, All rights reserved. | PH: 815-943-5909 | email: firstname.lastname@example.org
John 14:6 Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me."