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How to Make Wrought Iron Scrolls: DIY Guide

July 8, 2024
how to make wrought iron scrolls

Creating your own decorative iron art is deeply fulfilling. Wrought iron scrolls add beauty and elegance to any space. Imagine making these intricate designs yourself! They can enhance your garden gate, staircase railing, or art installation. This guide will show you how to make wrought iron scrolls, bringing metalworking into your hands.

I started making DIY wrought iron scrolls to update my old staircase. Replacing the railing was too expensive, costing $5,000 to $7,000 in 20101. So, I took up metalworking crafts. It was a way to save money and learn a new skill. With 22 cans of Rustoleum epoxy primer and paint, I began my project1.

This guide will give you everything you need to start making DIY wrought iron scrolls.

You’ll learn about the tools and materials needed. We’ll provide step-by-step instructions for selecting metal and crafting a scroll bender. The guide will also show different scroll designs and patterns. Plus, it will offer tips and techniques for mastering metal scrollwork. This is more than a hobby; it’s a way to add your personal touch to functional art.

Key Takeaways

  • Learn how to make wrought iron scrolls with this comprehensive DIY guide.
  • Discover the essential tools and materials needed for decorative iron art.
  • Follow detailed instructions to craft and use your own scroll bender.
  • Explore various scroll designs and patterns to enhance your metalworking crafts.
  • Gain insights into tips and techniques for mastering metal scrollwork.

Essential Tools and Materials for Making Wrought Iron Scrolls

Making beautiful wrought iron scrolls needs the right tools, materials, and techniques. We’ll look at the key tools and materials you’ll need. We’ll also cover the best metals for scrollwork and extra gear for detailed ironwork.

Tools You Will Need

To start with wrought iron design, you’ll need various smithing tools. You’ll need anvils, which can be 50 to 200 lb, with 100 or 125 lb good for most farm shops2. Blacksmith tongs should be 18 to 20 inches long, with hollow bit, curved-lip bolt tongs being popular2. You’ll also need different hammers like Sledge, Ball-Peen, Cross-Peen, and Rounding hammers for different tasks2. A heavy blacksmith’s vise with jaws 4 to 5 inches wide is best for holding pieces2. Tools like hardies, chisels, and punches are crucial, with various sizes for different jobs2.

Types of Metal Suitable for Scrolls

Mild steel and flat iron bars are top choices for wrought iron scrolls. Mild steel is great for bending and is flexible. Choosing quality metals is key for excellent ornamental ironwork.

Additional Equipment for Detailed Ornamental Ironwork

For detailed ironwork, you’ll want specialized gear. The Automatic Decorative Wrought Iron QUANTUM NARGESA MT150A is a top pick. It’s a welded steel machine for small to medium production3. It has tools for twisted, scrolled, and bent pieces, an NC programmer, a piece counter, automatic unbolt, and memories3. It also has an adjustable millimeter scale for uniform parts3.

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For those on a budget, making your own scroll bender setup can be cheaper and more personal4. But, manual methods can lead to mistakes, showing the importance of precise tools4.

Step-by-Step Instructions on How to Make Wrought Iron Scrolls

Making wrought iron scrolls might look hard, but follow a step-by-step guide for beautiful results. We’ll start with making your scroll bender, then use templates, and bend the metal for your design.

Creating Your Scroll Bender

First, build a precise scroll bender for metal scrollwork. Use plans made by experts for accuracy. Tools like CNC Plasma DXF Cut Files help a lot if you have them. Skilled smiths can make a scroll blank in minutes, showing the skill needed in metal crafts5.

Back in the early 1900s to the 1950s in England, making wrought iron pieces needed this kind of skill5.

Using Scroll Bending Templates

Scroll bending templates keep your designs consistent and precise. They help shape the metal right. It’s crucial to use them to avoid mistakes that could mess up your scroll.

When making scrolls, a custom scroll tool is often used. This shows the detail needed in traditional metalworking5.

scroll bending templates

Bending the Metal for Your Design

To bend the metal, clamp it in the scroll bender first. Work on each piece carefully, making sure they fit together well. This ensures your metal design is accurate and stable6.

Real wrought iron’s texture and how it holds heat are important for bending. Start by attaching wire pieces in the middle and work your way out for symmetry6. Spray paint can give your scrollwork a professional look, with colors like metallic to make it pop6.

Different Wrought Iron Scroll Designs and Patterns

Exploring iron scroll patterns can change how you see your wrought iron decor. Whether you like traditional or modern styles, these designs can make any space look unique with decorative iron art.

Traditional Iron Scroll Patterns: Traditional patterns often include classic motifs like fleur-de-lis, spirals, and vine-inspired shapes. These designs fit well in historic homes or spaces aiming for a timeless look. They bring elegance and sophistication to your metal projects.

Contemporary Scroll Designs: Modern iron scroll patterns focus on clean lines and a sleek look. Geometric shapes and simple curves are common in these designs. They’re great for modern homes or commercial spaces looking for an updated feel.

Decorative iron art has many uses:

  • Use wrought iron scroll patterns in gates and fences for a striking entrance.
  • Add unique touches to your railings and balconies for more visual appeal.
  • Choose decorative elements for window grills that mix security with beauty.
  • Design intricate outdoor furniture and sculptures that become conversation pieces.

Here’s a look at traditional versus contemporary iron scroll patterns:

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Attributes Traditional Designs Contemporary Designs
Motifs Fleur-de-lis, Spirals, Vines Geometric Shapes, Minimalistic Curves
Application Historic Homes, Classic Decor Modern Homes, Commercial Settings
Aesthetic Elegant, Sophisticated Sleek, Modern

Understanding different wrought iron scroll designs helps you tailor your projects. Whether you’re enhancing wrought iron decor or making decorative iron art, the options in metal design are endless.

Tips and Techniques for Mastering Metal Scrollwork

Mastering metal scrollwork takes technique, consistency, and detail. It’s important for both beginners and experienced blacksmiths. Improving your skills in hand-forged ironwork leads to intricate and high-quality results.

Maintaining Consistency in Your Scrolls

For consistent scrolls, bend each one at the same angle and curve. Use jigs or templates for a steady guide. This helps you copy your designs accurately.

Heating the metal to the right temperature makes it easier to bend and shape. This temperature shows as red to yellow hues7. Using the same heating method makes your scrolls uniform.

metal scrollwork

For perfect metal scrollwork, measure each scroll segment carefully. Keep your workspace set with tools like anvils, hammers, and tongs8. Practice often to build muscle memory and control in bending the metal.

Combining Scrolls for Complex Designs

To make complex designs, combine scrolls carefully. Start with a paper plan, breaking it into manageable parts. When joining scrolls, make sure they’re welded together well for strength8. Techniques like twisting and punching holes add detail to your design7.

Blacksmithing has been around since 1500 B.C. It values detailed and precise work, especially in scroll patterns7. Forging each piece individually lets you mix history and modern styles for unique metalwork8. With patience and effort, you can make not just simple scrolls, but elaborate ironwork.


Making your own wrought iron scrolls is a rewarding mix of creativity and skill. With the right tools and materials, like manual metal scroll bending tools, you can make unique designs that beautify your space9. It’s important to know the difference between wrought and cast iron. This knowledge helps you get the right strength and look you want10.

This guide has shown you how to make wrought iron scrolls step by step. You’ve learned about the importance of using the right templates and bending methods. Whether it’s for a home office or a custom pantry, wrought iron lets you create designs that fit your style and space needs11.

Taking good care of your tools is key to making your metalwork last9. As you try these methods, you’ll see the joy and pride in making your own wrought iron decor. The world of decorative iron art is full of possibilities, waiting for you to explore. This journey into metalworking crafts is both rewarding and limitless.


What are the essential tools needed for making wrought iron scrolls?

To make wrought iron scrolls, you’ll need a metal bender, smithing tools, and quality metalworking gear. Tools like scroll bending templates and CNC Plasma DXF Cut Files help with accuracy and consistency.

What types of metals are suitable for making scroll designs?

For scroll designs, mild steel and flat iron bars work well. They’re easy to shape into detailed designs. Plus, they’re strong and look great.

How do I create a scroll bender for my projects?

To make a scroll bender, use professional plans and maybe CNC Plasma DXF Cut Files if you have them. These plans help you build a tool for precise metal scrollwork.

Why are scroll bending templates important?

Scroll bending templates are key for consistent and precise scroll designs. They make sure each scroll is the same and meets your standards. This boosts the quality of your ironwork.

Can you provide step-by-step instructions for bending metal to make a scroll?

Yes, to bend metal for a scroll, heat it first to make it soft. Then, use the scroll bender and templates to shape it as planned. Keep your method consistent for the right curve and pattern.

What are some popular wrought iron scroll designs?

Popular scroll designs include traditional and modern styles. You’ll find classic spirals, elegant S-curves, and custom geometric patterns. These are great for garden gates, railings, and home decor.

How can I maintain consistency in my wrought iron scrolls?

To keep your scrolls consistent, use templates and precise measurements. Improve your technique and set up your tools right. This helps you get consistent scroll shapes.

What techniques can be used to combine scrolls for complex designs?

To combine scrolls, plan your design carefully and weld the pieces together. Make sure each scroll is shaped right and lined up well. This creates beautiful and detailed ironwork.

Source Links

  1. How to Update Iron Stair Spindles and Other Stair Railing Ideas –
  2. Wrought Iron Blacksmith Tools –
  3. MT150A: Bar Twisting and Scrolling Machine — Nargesa USA –
  4. Scroll Bender –
  5. Wrought Iron Fencing –
  6. Faux Iron Scroll Decor from Wire Hangers –
  7. Reviving Tradition: The Resurgence of Cowboy Skills –
  8. How Are Wrought Iron Light Fixtures Handmade? –
  9. Manual Wrought Iron Tools Latest Purchasing Guide –
  10. Wrought Iron And Cast Iron, Which Is Better For Iron Doors? – Custom iron doors,wrought iron gates,iron fencing,iron railing and iron staircase –
  11. How to Unlocking the Versatility of Wrought Iron Doors –
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