By Joe Sandor
Back in the old days, pioneers traveled with round cast iron skillets. You could make round pancakes, round eggs, and throw some rectangular strips of bacon on the side. But today, thanks to Alisa Toninato of FeLion Studios, you can cook a quiche in the shape of your home state.
Toninato made her first skillet in the familiar shape of the great dairy state, Wisconsin, in her own DIY backyard foundry at the first annual “Pour’n Yer Heart Out” iron pour in Milwaukee. Shortly after, while on a flight to L.A., she used the inflight map in her seat to draw out handles on all the states of the union, thus giving birth to the Made In America cast iron skillet map of the U.S.
Now FeLion Studios is in full swing production, offering castings of any state in the continental U.S. You could cook at least a dozen steaks in Texas alone. Recently, she ambitiously mapped out Canada with a whole new set of land mass challenges. Though the proportional sizes of Alaska and Hawaii give her pause: “I see Hawaii as a muffin tin instead of a skillet!”
This is an excerpt from MAKE Vol. 33′s “Made on Earth” section.
MAKE Volume 33 features our special Software for Makers section covering apps for circuit board design, 3D design and printing, microcontrollers, and programming for kids. Also, meet our new Arduino-powered Rovera robot and get started with Raspberry Pi. As usual, you’ll also find fascinating makers inside, like the maniacs on our cover, the hackers behind the popular Power Racing Series events at Maker Faire.
Try your hand at 22 great DIY projects, like the Optical Tremolo guitar effects box, "Panjolele" cake-pan ukelele, Wii Nunchuk Mouse, CNC joinery tricks, treat-dispensing cat scratching post, laser-cut flexing wooden books, sake brewing, growing incredibly hot “ghost chili” peppers, and much more.