About Matt

Matthew Parkinson

Bladesmith, instructor

From an early age Matt was fascinated by blacksmithing, knives and swords. He began his carer as a young teen, making his first knife from an old file under the direction of his grandfather. He later attended Vinal R.V.T.S., graduating from the manufacturing engineering program in 1994.

Matt began a self-driven discovery of blacksmithing, drawing upon his early exposure to knifemaking and his training in machining, as well as reading books on the topic and making many mistakes.  In 1998, he formed MP Metalworks and began selling his work at renaissance faires throughout the northeast.  He continued to grow and learn new techniques, thanks in part to the classes he attended at the Brookfield Craft center.

In 2005 Matt closed MP Metalworks in favor of teaming up with Jamie Lundell and Peter Swarz-Burt in their new company, Falling Hammer Productions and its subsidiary, Dragon’s Breath Forge.  In 2007, Matt again found himself at the Brookfield Craft Center, this time as a teacher rather than a student.  He also leads classes at the Guilford Arts Center and at the Peters Valley School of Craft, along with leading private lessons in his own shop.

Matthew specializes in making swords, knives, and axes from the early viking era to the early Renaissance, he is especially interested in viking style pattern welding, and the carving, inlay and engraving styles common to the viking era. After the birth of his Son in Nov 2012 Matthew took a partial leave of absence from FHP becoming a full time stay at home dad and part time blacksmith\bladesmith.

2015 was a big year for Matt.   Later that year, he appeared on the premier episode of the popular History Channel show, Forged in Fire.  To see the outcome, track down season 1, episode 1: The Japanese Katana. With bladesmithing becoming a larger and larger portion of his work, Matt decided to work towards achieving more formal recognition in the knife making and collecting community.

In June of 2016 Matt presented work to the American Bladesmith Society (ABS) for his Journeyman Smith test.  In the three performance tests and the fit-and-finish judging, he was deemed to have attained the level of JS and accorded all the appropriate honors.

Matt later returned to Forged in Fire, and you can see his second appearance in the first episode of the third season: The Scottish Claymore.

Quoteable Quotes:

“You’re fired.  See you Monday.”