Here is a way to forge a leaf hook. These are quite popular, and can be made quickly with some practice.
I start with some 3/8″ round bar cut to 9″.
After heating up the bar, make a small square taper at one end of the bar. This will be the tip of the leaf. After that, isolate about 3/4″ from the tip of the taper back by hammering two fullers on the corner of your anvil 90˚ from each other.
Draw out the bar for about 2″ from the fullers back. You can clean this up later. Next, to make the leaf shape, with the corner of the isolated bulb pointing up, hammer the piece down flat. Use the peen of your hammer to widen the leaf where needed.
Next, chisel in on the leaf the veins. I like to use a chisel with a rounded edge so that I can walk the chisel along as I hit.
Now place the piece back in the fire the other way around to start the hook. Forge a square taper on the end and draw out the bar so that a smooth even taper is made from the end to about 4″ in length. Next, round out the taper by forging out the corners — square to octagon — octagon to round.
Next, forge a “curly-Q” at the end of the taper.
Now you’re ready to bend the hook. You can do this around the horn of the anvil, but if you are making several hooks and you want them to be the same, it is good to use a jig with a bending fork.
Next, I like to flatten a couple of points to allow for screw holes. I drill the holes, but not before countersinking them at the anvil. I flatten out the sections using a guillotine tool with a flat die.
Now you can draw out and cleanup the stem between the leaf and the holes. Make the stem as skinny as you like, but make sure you will be able to bend it.
Using scrolling tongs, twist and turn the stem as you see fit. Also, using a v-block and a small cross peen hammer, create some folds in the leaf to make it more realistic looking.
Heat up the whole hook again and place into a vice. Use some tongs or pliers to straighten up the hook and make any changes you want. Then, give the whole thing a good wire brushing to remove scale. Now is a good time to file away any rough spots you don’t want.
While it is still hot, apply some kind of finish. I use a beeswax and coconut oil mixture.
Let it cool, wipe off the excess wax, and drill your holes. And it is done. I like to brush the leaf with a brass brush to give it a golden look.
Related reading: Forging a Wall Hook Rack