I finished carving a few eating spoons and bowls recently. There are many factors to consider when making objects such as these that will be held and used daily. First among these is wood choice. Relatively dense hardwoods with tight grain are generally stronger and less absorbent than softer or open-pored species. The spoons above are all black cherry except for the fourth from the left, which is American sycamore. The fact that they’re all from branch crooks also allows for more delicacy and thinness while maintaining strength.
Carved accents can be a nice touch. The three patterns on these spoons were all achieved by combining the same sort of triangular chip cuts in different ways. One benefit of sliced, rather than sanded, surfaces is the lack of grain raising in use and after washing.
The interior surface of this cherry eating bowl allows the eating spoon to glide along getting the last bit of ice cream.
The outside can be textured and or painted in a variety of ways as with the maple bowl above. For more on this, keep your eyes on Fine Woodworking Magazine. I’ve written an article that goes step-by-step on the carving of eating bowls like these, including subtle design options, that will be in a future issue.
I wrote in this post about my typical oil treatment for bowls. Cleanup is just a matter of a quick wash at the sink, then dry with a towel. After a while you can re-treat to freshen the surface if you’d like. I also have some information on treatment and care on this page of my website.