Shown is custom fire pit by metal artist Chaz Lamb. The Lumberton artist is the owner of C Lamb Creations.
LUMBERTON — Chaz Lamb’s pineapple-shaped fire pit warranted an honorable mention in the Our State Magazine’s Made in North Carolina Awards.
The awards contest is an opportunity for North Carolina makers, bakers, crafters and creators to be featured in the magazine. Categories included food, drink, craft, home and garden and style.
Lamb’s metal fire pit, titled “The Pineapple,” received an honorable mention in the home and garden category and earned him a mention on ourstate.com, and an invitation to be a vendor in the Marketplace on Jan. 8 and 9 at the Best of Our State event at Pinehurst Resort. Also, Lamb’s work will be considered for merchandising opportunities in the Our State Store.
Lamb is the artist behind C Lamb Creations, a business that specializes in custom glass, wood and metal engraving and pyrography, or wood burning art.
He is a frequent Our State reader, but it was his mother who found an article about the Made in N.C. Awards, Lamb said.
“I recently started making these fire pits, and she said it would be a good idea to enter this contest since they’re so unique,” the artist said.
Participants had nine weeks, from June 10 to Aug. 12, to submit their product to the Made in N.C. Awards. After the submission period, a panel of judges spent the period between Aug. 13 and Sept. 29 tasting, testing, and inspecting the top-notch entries. Each category had a winner and two honorable mentions. The winner of the category in which Lamb competed was Nicholas Nichols Knives, a company that makes custom knives. The winning entry was a large chef knife made with battleship teak.
Lamb first sent photos when he entered the contest but drove the pineapple fire pit personally to the Our State headquarters in Greensboro when he learned he was a finalist.
The panel of judges included Our State Retail Marketing Agent Morgan Benshoff, artist and educator Nicholaus Neptune, environment designer Christi Barbour, handbag designer Holly Aiken, Biltmore Estate Wine Company Marketing Manager Jill Whitfield, Central Piedmont Community College Dean of Skilled Trades and Public Services Richard Kugelmann, and Amy Jordan, executive director of Sawtooth School for Visual Art.
Lamb said he was “shocked” that “The Pineapple” failed to take the first-place prize, but is happy his work will be seen on the Our State website.
“It’ll catch people’s eyes,” he said.
For years Lamb focused on custom sheet metal artwork.
“I would airbrush ‘em and paint ‘em and sell ‘em at festivals,” Lamb said.
The idea of transitioning to creating fire pits came to mind recently and has taken off since.
“I thought it was cool to customize fire pits and do custom orders, and it started from there,” Lamb said. “It kind of took off.”
Lamb said 90% of the orders are custom creations. Team logos and mascots are most popular.
The pits are made of carbon steel, a material that allows the pits to endure the fire for many years, Lamb said.
“They’re a quarter-inch thick so they’ll last a long time,” he said. “Your box-store fire pit that you buy is paper thin and will burn out in a year’s time. These are pretty heavy duty.”
Depending on the size and detail of the pit, it can take either a couple of days or a couple of weeks for Lamb to complete a custom fire pit.
“I have to draw and freehand everything out. Then, I have to go back and cut everything out so it’s like drawing it twice,” Lamb said.
Lamb created more than 30 pits during this past summer.
Out of all the fire pits Lamb has completed “The Pineapple” is, by far, Lamb’s favorite.
For more information about Lamb’s work, email [email protected] or visit the C Lamb Creation Facebook page.
Tomeka Sinclair can be reached at [email protected] or 910-416-5865.