Lucas House

Lucas fell in love with metal in his very first high school welding class. Eighteen years later, he works metal at his own custom and artistic studio, IronHouse Forge, and has discovered that the only thing better than working the anvil every day is helping others learn to do the same.

A graduate of NC State University’s College of Design, Lucas has taught metal and blacksmithing classes at Central Carolina Community College and John C. Campbell Folk School. He has also taught at Penland School of Crafts, where he has taken a number of classes over the years.


Dave Nicolay

Dave received his degree in Industrial Design from the NC State College of Design, where he connected with a thriving community of Raleigh makers. During that time, he was a Woodshop Technician at the NCSU Craft Center. After graduation, Dave is the Director of Construction at Empire Hardhat, where he oversees design, planning and implementation of all rehabilitation and restoration projects. Throughout his career, Dave has worked with many skilled craftspeople in the Triangle area and has learned firsthand about the need for ShopSpace.

Dave has been involved in a wide range of projects, such as the Raleigh space parklet, Habitat for Humanity's ReSpace Design Competition and Build, and The Bain Project (art installation at the Bain Waterworks building).  Dave is constantly sought after for his creative eye, leadership, building/construction knowledge and experience, not to mention his great sense of humor


Mary Catherine Floyd Nicolay

MC found her love of the metalsmithing craft and community studying under the late Charlie McKinney in Bucyrus, Missouri. Through Charlie and his family MC was introduced to the Metal Museum in Memphis, where she worked as both an apprentice and artist in residence before coming home to North Carolina.

 Influenced by the hard work and artistry of women like her grandmother and her study of fiber arts at Appalachian State, MC looks to old fabrics, vintage wallpaper patterns and paper dolls for inspiration in her metalwork.  Carrying this fiber tradition to steel is MC’s way of paying homage to the unsung makers of the South. Learn more about MC at Steelthread Art.


Bill Knight

Bill developed a passion for metal working in his middle-school shop classes, which developed into a life-long hobby of tinkering on all things metal and mechanical. He learned jewelry making under the late Mary Ann Scherr and later spent many summer vacations studying at Penland School of Craft, first in the metals studio and later in the iron studio.

Bill brings management and non-profit expertise to the organization. He is a retired Information Technology Director and in his retirement has put his management skills to work in the non-profit sector, currently managing two private foundations as executive director. 


Board of Directors

ShopSpace couldn’t exist without the behind the scenes work of the Board of Directors. The current Board consists of the founders, plus:

  • Julie Schmidt - owner of yellowDog : creative, a design, advertising, public relations, and marketing communications firm.

  • Pam Blondin - Owner of Deco Raleigh, offering works by local artisans and makers. Pam has over 30 years of nonprofit experience.

  • Steve Keene - General counsel and chief operating officer of the North Carolina Medical Society.