Monday, July 7, 2014

Unusual Victorian Silver Serving Pieces

 The Victorians had a serving piece for almost every imaginable type of food.   I love to find unusual pieces, and then research what they were originally used for.  

My favorite reference book is Yesterday's Silver For Today's Table.  Anytime I am stumped, I check this book and more often than not, I am able to identify the mystery piece.  
These are some of the more interesting pieces I have found lately.  

Aspic Server or Jelly Server.  Aspic, apparently, is clear tasteful jelly that is made from broth, similar to Cranberry Sauce (the jellied type from a can).  This little knife is similar to a small cake knife. 

 Bonbon Spoon - small delicate spoon, used for scooping candy or nuts.  

 
Cake Breaker - looks like a comb with extended tines. The long tines are used to “break” into a delicate cake (such as Angel Food) before the cake is actually sliced and served. This piece is most often used with the cake knife and/or the serving cake fork.

Cake Serving Fork - used to scoop and lift a slice of cake, once it has been cut. Has extended tines that are long enough to fit under the entire slice of cake.

Ice Cream Forks (also known as Sporks) The bowl of the piece is similar to a teaspoon with small tines at the tip.

Chipped Beef Fork - used to serve chipped beef, a smoke-dried beef that has been sliced very thinly. Has tines that flare outward for the piercing and holding of the slice of meat.

 Cucumber Server - used for serving slices of cucumber.  

 Dessert Forks - small three-tine forks used for cakes, pies or other pastries. 

Butter Pick - has a spiraled end, used for lifting a pat of butter.

 Poultry Shears - scissor-like tool used to cut through the bones of poultry.  

Sardine Fork - fork with short, wide tines. Used for serving sardines, anchovies, pickled vegetables, as well as petits fours.

Sharpening Steel - used to sharpen carving knives.  

Tomato Server -  large round flat bowl is used to lift and serve tomatoes.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Easter Ideas and Treats from Pinterest

 There are some amazing and clever Easter related items on Pinterest.  Above are DIY Antiqued Vases.

 Delicious looking Easter Egg Cake.




DIY Burlap Bunny Table Runner.

 Adorable and easy Bunny Buns.

The prettiest Egg Cup I've ever seen.



Monogrammed Silver Egg Cup.

 Antique Trophy used as an Egg Cup.

Several Trophies used as Egg Cups.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

 Estate Sale season is starting to pick up, after a long, long winter.  I found some great things for my Etsy shop over the past couple of weekends.

 A set of English silverplate fish forks and knives, J monogrammed.  

 A couple of decorative thimbles. 

 Art Deco jewelry.

 Brass Horse Head Key Hook.

 Just in time for Easter, a family of brass bunnies.

Brass sailboat door knocker, and beautiful old book.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Historic House Estate Sales

 One of my favorite things about estate sales is being able to see inside historical homes. 

Summit Ave in St. Paul, MN has some of the most beautiful homes in the area.  Many were built for lumber barons and other extremely wealthy people in the late 1800's.  

Last weekend an estate sale took place in the above house. The house is featured in the book Great Houses of Summit Avenue and the Hill District

 I took this photo on the streets below in St. Paul when I realized I could see the house.  The St. Paul Cathedral is on the far right of the photo.

 Closer view.

The above and next few pictures are from Zillow/Saint-Paul-MN/ (they had a nicer day to take pictures!)
This is the street view of the house.
It was built in 1894 for a local banker. 


Another view from the street - the front entrance faces the neighbors house.  The carriage house in the background.
It was designed by architects Charles A. Reed and Allen H. Stem, who also designed The St. Paul Hotel, and NYC's Grand Central Terminal. 

The Grand Foyer, where the main part of the sale was held.

 
There were several amazing fireplaces.  The fireplace screen was actually for sale.

Marble staircase leading to second floor.

Unfortunately, most of the rooms were closed off during the sale.  I think this is the third floor ballroom.

 
The carriage house - now garage - overlooks the city and the river.

Beautiful detail in the driveway - covered by snow when I was there. 
It was really fun to see into this beautiful house.  If walls could talk...
The sale was a little too expensive for me, but they had some lovely items. 

 I did find a few things for my Etsy shop, at other estate sales and antique shops.

 A handful of antique flatware.  

 Victorian engraved heart charm.  

A unique Eiffel Tower/Tape Measure souvenir, and a large toast rack.
Hopefully some more interesting estate sales will come up!

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