Lovely Little Things

This is an apothecary spoon sent to me by my friend Ember. ( She had inherited it from her friend Margery, an artist. I think it is ideal for my herbal work; I guess it holds a little less than a tablespoon. I used it in this jar of chile powder, and it works so well for scooping out a small amount, without the flat awkwardness of a teaspoon. Herbal recipes are never exact; pinch of this, smidge of that, spoonful or handful. I am delighted with it.

Some of my favorite things are old and may seem insignificant. Instead of an expensive umbrella swift for winding a skein of yarn off my spinning wheel, this is what I have, a forty dollar find at an antique shop.

It has a couple of  repairs, was some red colour, looks like someone tried to refinish it. It doesn’t matter. I have skeined hundreds and hundreds of yards of handspun on it.

This is the apothecary spoon next to an antique Sabatier chef’s knife I inherited. It is carbon steel, solid as a brick, and holds a wicked edge. If I could have just one of my knives, it would be this one.

Three lovely little things that make life easier…


5 thoughts on “Lovely Little Things

  1. magdalena,

    there is at least one blacksmith here in aus who makes similar knives to order for the top Aussie Chefs; I don’t even want to think about his prices!!!!! This knife will outlive us all!

    My poor Ashford spinning wheel sits in dreadful need of a service upstairs; I long to get back to it; in the next season of my life once Uni’s finished most definitely!

    and when there’s a little room.


    who has wound many a scane of wool on a humble ‘niddy noddy’… Some of my happiest times over the past decade have been with fellow spinners…a special group of people indeed, many of whom gave me great joy in what could have been a very lonely time in my life.

    God is loving and merciful!

    • I spun so much yarn for sale that the niddy noddy was getting hard on my wrists. With the winder, I can skein directly from the bobbin while it is still on the flyer. My Ashford Traveller is in need of tuning, as well.

      I dare not price the replacement for my old Sabatier – it would make me afraid to use it!

      • All right, I looked Sabatier up – and they aren’t made as well anymore. Mine is carbon steel with fine wood handles. The new ones are stainless steel with thermoplastic handles, and the ones that are actually made in France would be about $150 US. I think I better treasure mine and treat it with due respect!

  2. magdalena,

    Alternatively, you could search out a bespoke knife maker in canada; similar to the top of the line blacksmiths who turn out carbon steel knives for the likes of Tetsuya etc. they interviewed his blacksmith of choice on the telly over here as part of a ‘tets’ special; if I make one expensive investment to last me the rest of my life, it will be a knife from either he (can’t remember his details but a little drilling down through Google might help) or one of his fellows. One of the shepherds hill girls is a blacksmith; you may (and I am dead serious here) like to see if either she or the smithie from whom she learnt her trade could make yo a proper carbon steel knife.

    Just a thought,


    • My knife is carbon steel and is in good shape, bu tnow I am motivated to keep it that way! I have three good carbon steel vintage/antique knives and the rest of them are Wusthof or Henckel knives. Yes, it has taken me nearly thirty years, but I have a set of good knives.

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