My wife has wanted one of these spades for a while. Less than 2ft long and apparently easier to use when kneeling. She already has a long handled trowel but it just bends to easily with the extra leverage and just a 1/4" bar between metal and handle. Looking around these things are not cheap, especially for something that she might not get on with, so I decided "how hard could it be?" Bought a handle as I'm no carpenter and it was only a few pounds. Welded the rest up from 2mm mild steel plate. Now I know carbon steel would be better etc. but it is not for digging big holes and levering out rocks, just planting in reasonably friable soil. Wanted a blackish finish, but not sure how to achieve it. Tried paint but that was bad, was actually happier with the finish after I tried removing most of the paint, so that's how it will stay. Waxed the handle and attached it with 2 makeshift rivets (cut down nails). Had a try in the garden and it appears to work well. Will have to see if MrsG likes it, but it's a Christmas pressie so will have to wait. Would love to have a go at forging a decent one.