Sunday, August 28, 2011

Yet Another “LJ” Spoon

 Maybe it is just because they are very common first initials, or maybe there are just a lot of “Miss L’s” who manage to find the right “Mr. J”, but I find it interesting that this is the 3 or 4th “LJ” spoon that I have carved to date.  No other letter combination comes close.

I always attempt to do something unique with each of my Lovespoons and having yet another spoon with the same initials meant that I had to scratch around a bit to come up with a design that was both new and one that I liked. 

Aside from specifying the initials (“L” and “J”, the initials of “his” parents), that there should be a heart at the top and a heart shaped bowl, the couple that requested the spoon gave me a free hand on the design.

I decided that I wanted to do something that had a lot of negative space in it – perhaps years from now historians all over the world will refer to this as my “Negative Space Period”.  However, add too much “negative space” and there isn’t much to hold the whole thing together.  This is particularly important to me because it is considered bad form to have one’s handcarved spoon fall apart soon after delivery:--) 

The “L” and the “J” demand some sort of outside” structure.  I finally settled on the two twisted side supports.  As I understand it, this “rope” motif was used a lot in lovespoons carved by sailors in days gone by.  I guess this was because rope was a big part of their lives aboard ship and because its interlocked fibers symbolize “togetherness” and that “two together are stronger than one alone”.

To Smooth or Not to Smooth, that is the Question.

Here’s a topic that I am constantly arguing with myself: “On a lovespoon, should the carving marks show or should they be removed?”  I usually end up sanding them all out.  But I often wonder if that detracts from the “correct” look.  After all, shouldn’t a carved spoon look like it was…well…”carved”? 

So, I’m looking for opinions: 

(a) Should the sanding be limited to just smoothing so that the “facets” still remain?


(b) Should the spoon be sanded until it is completely free of carving marks? 

The winning opinion will be chosen at random from all of the opinions received and will win my undying appreciation:--)

One for the Bench:

Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant. - Robert Louis Stevenson.

‘Til next time…Keep makin’ chips!

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