grapevine hardware

New Grapevine Door Knob Added to Wine Cellar Door Handle Collection

Our grapevine door handle collection has, until now, focused on capturing the gnarly quality of vine stems and the distinctive serrated shape of their leaves, with less attention on the grapes themselves.  This focus worked well for creating long door grips and horizontal door levers but was not well suited for a door knob.  

With this in mind, we began work on a new vine door knob and in our July 12th post  shared with you how Martin Pierce created detailed  perspective drawings as guidelines for his 3 dimensional wood pattern. The pattern was carved in basswood, sealed with primer and used to create a 2 piece hollow core mold. Red wax was poured into the mold and several wax replicas were made. The wax facsimiles were then coated with successive layers of fine ceramic slurry to form an outer wall and the pieces  were baked to form a rigid ceramic shell.  Once baked, the ceramic shells were  heated in a de-waxing  autoclave and steam was  pumped into the shell to remove the wax. The wax was then  filtered, cleaned  and  recycled for future use. The de-waxed shell was subsequently invested with molten bronze and after cooling, the gates that delivered the fluid metal were ground away and the bronze casting was ready to “chased” or refined by hand.

Vine door knob.jpg

Seven weeks later and we have now machined our first castings, added the spindle and  internal springs, fitted our existing vine leaf back-plate and finished by hand our first pieces.  We hope you like this new addition to the collection.


2 newly discovered wineries in Paso Robles California

photo by Iris is not the only one in our family who enjoys visits to Paso Robles. We are fortunate to have close friends in this area but on our most recent trip we decided to play tourist and give our friends a break from our company.

When you travel it can sometimes be difficult to find a really informative website that covers topics like where to stay, the best restaurants, hiking trails and other activities, but is just such a website. It is easy to navigate, is comprehensive and, better still, can be used on your smart phone, allowing you to make those spur of the moment changes.  And, personally speaking, it allows me to deal with a husband who says he does not like to plan holidays but still expects them to be hassle free and fun!  They also have a great blog where I was pleased to discover a recent post about wineries that welcomed dogs, making it possible to visit with Iris.

Here are a few highlights from our long weekend that may help you find places to sample and purchase wine, all the while enjoying the beautiful natural surroundings.

  1. A visit to Sculpterra Winery & Sculpture Garden. Not only is ones palate stimulated but so is ones imagination. As you may know Martin is ,in his “spare” time, pursuing his sculpting and is currently casting 2 large stag beetles that we will be sharing with you soon.  Therefore, we were thrilled to discover this artful winery located in the eastern portion of Paso Robles which is an area we are just beginning to appreciate. Some of the bronze sculptures were created by sculptor John Jagger and their scale and movement is quite awe-inspiring.
  1. Lone Madrone is also a great winery to visit and is located in the bucolic landscape on the west Adelaida side of Paso Robles. The winery is run by a fellow ex-patriat Neil Collins who, over the last few years, has  brought his heritage and his fondness for cider to fruition with his  Blackbeard Cider.  True to its roots it is a hard cider with plenty of flavor but also a little buzz to it.

To view our beautifully detailed Grapevine series of bespoke hardware for your next wine cellar or winery project, as well as our entire collection of architectural hardware, visit our site at

Designers can visit the showroom located at:

5433 W. Washington Blvd.

Los Angeles, CA  90016

323 939 5929

The California grape harvest is early this year

Photo courtesy of one of our favorite wineries, Tablas Creek. Global warming has come to Central California and forced an earlier than usual grape harvest in wine growing regions that include Napa, Paso Robles and Santa Barbara.  Let's hope this is good  news for those of us who enjoy an occasional glass of cab, chardonnay, zinfandel or syrah.  

While the winemakers are busy harvesting all those beautiful vines we thought we might introduce a couple of our custom architectural hardware collections that we feel would be the perfect addition to their tasting areas, guest rooms and other public spaces.

Our Grapevine collection was inspired by the beautiful Paso Robles wine region and is a natural for use in wineries.  The hallmark of Martin Pierce Custom Hardware, incredible detail, is evident in all of the pieces and this attention to detail will delight all who enter your establishment.

The amazing detail found on levers from the Grapevine collection of custom hardware at Martin Pierce

Our willow collection would also be a nice design addition to both your public and private spaces.  While simpler in design than our more elaborate Grapevine collection, the same amazing detail and casting process is used to create this elegant hardware collection.

Passageway levers from the Willow 1 collection at Martin Pierce Hardware

Drawer pull from Willow 2 collection by Martin Pierce Custom Hardware

Drawer pull from Willow 2 collection by Martin Pierce Custom Hardware

To view these items or our entire collection of architectural hardware, please visit our site at  Also, be sure to check your favorite winery's website to find out when the annual harvest celebrations are scheduled.

Just for fun:  Here is to the corkscrew - a useful key to unlock the storehouse of wit,the treasury of laughter, the front door of fellowship, and the gate of pleasant folly.       W.E.P. French