Yesterday, a package arrived from Jane Mickelborough. After having the pleasure of getting to know Jane at Greenwood Fest 2017, I requested a porte-cuillères, a traditional Breton spoon rack that is meant to hang over the table. It incorporates a clever arrangement of cord that allows the rack to be pulled down for access, then raised back up to clear the view. I tested and admired the porte-cuillères in the workshop this morning.
Jane is a fascinating person and incredibly skilled in many ways. She carves, she turns, she makes fan birds, she dances elegantly and can sing you a sea shanty. And that’s just scratching the surface. She’s also deeply steeped in the craft traditions of Brittany, which you can read about more in an interview with Jane that Peter Follansbee shared in this blog post last year.
Many Breton elements are featured in the details of the walnut porte-cuillères that Jane made for me, like the brass tacks:
And the intriguing and beautiful wax inlay technique that Jane used around the central hub of the porte-cuillères:
The rack will hold many spoons made by friends:
Jane’s crossing the pond to be at Greenwood Fest again. Still time to sharpen your knives and practice your sea shanties.