Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Right Stuff

Bookmark and ShareI'm blogging about this very simple traditionally styled Welsh lovespoon because the young man who commissioned it got it right!!

Although the budget was modest and the design pretty restrained, I love everything about this spoon; and here's why:

The young man is a Canadian marrying a Welsh girl.  He made the effort to look up some Welsh traditions and came across the lovespoon.  Although not a carver, he did some more research and came across my website (so double bonus points there!!) whereupon, he commissioned me to help him realize his wish of presenting his wife to be with this beautiful reminder of her Welsh roots and his love for her.  THAT'S all good stuff!

He wanted the spoon to have a traditional feel and so we opted for a lovely 'panel' style spoon with a broad, squarish panel and a nice swan neck stem leading to the elegant bowl.  Chosing this style of spoon also gave me the opportunity to include one of the most beautiful circular motifs I have ever come across.  I'd love to be able to take credit for this evocative 'tree of live' pattern with its wonderfully stylized branches and the elegant hearts which form the tree's trunk....alas, this was the creation of a clever Welsh carver whose name has been lost to the mists of time.   Although I made a couple of simple modifications, the design's feeling is intact and its beauty is there for all to see.

Simple beauty which is the hallmark of real Welsh lovespoon carving

Throughout the rest of the handle are included a number of simple but poignant symbols traditional to the art of lovespoon carving.   The keyhole pattern suggests the young woman holds the key to the young man's heart, the lovely comma shapes indicate the soul (for longwinded and quirky reasons that only the Welsh could come up with) and the diamonds indicate a wish for prosperity.   The couple's initials add a further personal flourish to the detailing.
The really unique detail is the orca and lobster motif.  With one half of the couple coming from the East Coast of Canada and the other from the West, no two things could more perfectly symbolize that than the Nova Scotia lobster and the West Coast Orca.   Although the detailing had to be kept pretty simple, these simple symbols pack a LOT of meaning for the happy couple and that is how it should be!

Though simply rendered, these details pack a lot of meaning!

As I referred to in a previous blog, it is this merging of content and intent which really make a lovespoon come to life.  Without meaning, the spoon is simply a pretty carving....and this lovely little spoon is much more than simply a pretty carving!

1 comment:

  1. I agree, and this spoon is really lovely. I'm crazy about the circular design at the top! Like the previous blog post, this is a great example of "less" being more; Meaning, sometimes a simpler spoon (still full of personality) can be just the right thing. A beautiful piece!