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Bulgarian Blacksmith

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!

lucky horshoe handmade in Bulgaria

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Rebecca Richardson

Rebecca is the founder of Eat Stay Love Bulgaria. Many years ago, after falling in love with Bulgaria but struggling to find information about things to do or places to go, she decided to start a blog, which over time has developed into what she hopes is now a helpful guide to living in Bulgaria.