Thomas Dean

A little Medival help pls

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I did a demo in town Sat. and was asked about making a spoon, fork, and knife for Ren. fares. The lady just wanted 1 of each for herself and want to buy local. Said she was in no hurry of which I said "Good!" Here's what I need. Do any of you fine folks have pictures of a set you have made for this era. She does the Scarborough Fair (sp) in Waxahachi, TX and is going to Conroe, TX next month for that areas Ren fair. If you are familuar with those 2 events then you know what time frame it should be. ('cuss I sure don't!;) ) I pretty sure that the fork was not invented yet but that's beside the point...the lady wanted all 3 pieces! Any help wil be greatly appreciated. I Love this place!
Also, what would be a fair price for them?

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"Medieval" covers about 1000 years and a lot of territory as well. Renaissance is a lot shorter but still a lot of land was covered by the term. Can you get them to narrow it down?

Social level makes a big bump; a solid silver set ornamented with rubies is going to cost a bit more than one carved from wood and horn.

Basically folks didn't use iron spoons, preferring horn and wood for lower classes and silver and gold for upper classes.

Depending on date and location you could have a 1 tine pricker, a 2 tine fork or a three tine fork in the renaissance.

The knife is universal and would of course be 1 edged.

Complete sets of matching eating implements in a trousseau were common with the middle to upper classes who would bring their own when they went out to eat.

Basically they want something that looks non-modern. I would look at some of the renaissance cookbooks as they usually have a picture or two of period feasts being served.

Also the Renaissance Low countries tended to have a lot of pictures of eating scenes "The Garden of Earthly Delights" comes to mind for examples of eating ware from around then/there.

I'll try to get some time in the library tonight and pull some cites...

Edited by ThomasPowers

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Here are two types of fork I make.
They're just 1/4" mild steel.

A friend of mine asked for a place setting for 4 ... so I'm interested in seeing some other ideas too. :D

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What the utensils look like would depend on the period, location and station of her persona.

Frosty

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Aeneas, I like the second forks handle. I would not have thought of wrapping a rat tail around a twist like that. Very nice.

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I have not looked, but this site Society for Creative Anachronism, Inc. might have the information you are looking for. They are renaissance reinactment organization, but they do extesive research. If you cannot find what you need to know there, you might find links to find it.
If you find you like making such utensils, you might also find customers through them.

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As an aside, the table fork in various simple guises was used by the Romans. It was eschewed by most people in Christendom until the Renaissance (as I recall), most using their fingers, a spoon and their belt knife for eating. As it was when forks became fashionable, they were considered ungodly by the Church as they replaced God-given fingers. (The fact one tends to use fingers to hold a fork was for some reason ignored.)

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Thanks for the help guys. As I stated I'm not sure at to the exact time frame she is 'playing' in and I knew this would bring questions...I just can't answer them. the lady told me a friend has a set that is carried in a leather pouch on the side that has all 3 utensils and "they are real crudely made" which is sorta what she is looking for. Shoot, I can do crude! ;) Anyway, thanks again for the help. I'll just have to wait and see if she calls me back to make the order.

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i make forks, spoons and knifes for the mountian mes as well as earlier reinactments . this is a area you can defenetly youse your emagination ! the styles and types of period forks and spoons is spectacular and while irln spoons arnt as common ive seen enough of them to make the available .. the nicer ones were highly forged and filed bright ! you could put rams head or dragons or ..... on the end .I currently make mine from 1/4 square but it takes a bit of work to get that forged out wide enuf for a spoon . for starters you might try 1/4 x1/2 flat bar . you can decorate the handles with punches chizles or filework.. you will need some type of depression to forge the spoon into .. i have made one to fit hardy hole .I used a chunk of 2 in sq forged it to fit hearty cut it off so 3/4 of a inch was sticking above . Used a ball piene as a set tool to make a ball shaped depression forge it to one side to give the spoon shape . Finished with a die grinder (or dremell) . These items sell to the public also! i also make a spork (spoon on one end fork on other) and its a big hit ! good luck

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Thomas,
I have done the fair in Conroe (Plantersville actually), and most of the patrons there buy their stuff from Museum Replicas. Here is a link to there website and the eating utensils they sell-- Feasting Utensils - Museum Replicas -- Medieval Utensils - Museum Replicas.
If this is what her friend has, your worst attempt will be better than what you can buy from them. As far as the Scarborough Faire goes, that one leans more towards a fantasy faire anyway so I think you'll be fine if she does place an order

Hope this helps,
John

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Trencher (tableware))

;)

the first thing that comes to mind when Medieval cuisine is the subject

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cutlery#History
(with a masterpiece painting by Goya)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fork#History
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spoon#History

spoonforkcutlery + ancientmuseumbronzeironpewter combinations in image search bring up some interesting stuff
http://www.exeter.gov.uk/timetrail/10_goldenage/object_detail.asp?photoref=2_10_2

"A pewter 'Apostle spoon'
This is the earliest spoon in the hoard from City Mills. Its name derives from the saint, holding sword and keys, at the knop (end). It dates to c. 1500, so it must have been at least 150 years old when deposited in the late 17th century. "

late middle ages Edited by Ice Czar

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One of the tricks I like is reversing the spoon
instead of the narrow part being the tip like a modern spoon have it wide at the tip and narrow as it goes back to the handle

Just a thought.
Spoons were in general cast or carved in the medieval period.
I always felt that this was probably a result of less reactivity of the metals and speed of manufacture.

http://www.medievaldesign.com/tavola/posatebig.jpg
Medieval and Tudor Pewter Repl
British Museum - Five silver spoons
Medieval design

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These last several post have given me the ideas I need. Thanks all for your help. Ain't this just the best place!?! I LVOE it:)

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Will do. I may try something this weekend. One of my brothers is coming in this evening and he want to get in my shop. He's coming in for our 86th family reunion on Sat., (it's in Cut-n-Shoot, TEXAS.) He teaches welding and drafting at a HS in Tenn. and will take a class to the National Metal Museum for a field trip each year. (Lucky dawg) He has taken a couple of weekend classes on blacksmithing there and has worn out my phone asking how to make a forge, where to get an anvil, so on and so forth. I have told him about IFI but looks like I can SHOW him IFI and what he has been missing. Looking forward to the weekend!

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I can't wait to see the photos.

This weekend I'm doing a demo over by mt airy nc
if all goes well we'll be making medieval styled sporks

if it goes really really really well some of them will be pattern welded

this is one of the styles of sporks

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