Antique Spotlight - Dough Bowls

One of my fondest memories from childhood is the smell of fresh baked goods. The smell of my mums banana bread as I walked in the door was always such a special treat. It meant I was about to have a sit down with my mum over a cup of tea and warm banana bread to discuss the day. Those special moments still remain a treasured memory, one I hope to recreate with my children.

A few of the bowls that will be on our new online store
When I shop for antiques I'm drawn to pieces that have a story to tell, pieces that were part of a family's history and memories. On our last trip we brought back antique dough bowls and they checked all those boxes. Initially I was drawn to the shape and scale but when I heard the story I fell in love with them and into the container they went!

When I see our antique dough bowls in the store my imagination wanders to family traditions of those living in England in the 1800s: perhaps they baked as a family and enjoyed the fresh bread with dinner. I imagine a father carving these bowls from a large piece of wood, and I picture the beautiful craftsmanship used to make a silky smooth surface.

Carved from one piece of wood these bowls were used each morning to kneed the bread for the day. Smaller ones were used for a single family often carved by a fiancé for his future wife and kept in her hope chest. The large ones were used on large estates to make the immense amount of bread they would need each day.

What's so interesting about these bowls is their special place in history, they represent a time long gone: 1800s England, the Industrial Revolution is getting underway, technology is advancing at a rapid pace, and more so than ever machines are replacing hand made tasks - bread making included. These antique handcrafted bowls are what remains of an increasingly hands-free world.

If making bread from scratch isn't your thing (to be honest I have never done it), these bowls are so sculptural they look amazing on a dining table or in a front entry. Imagine them filled with gourds in autumn.

I was thrilled to see Sarah Richardson use them as a centrepiece in the October House & Home Magazine.

Whether you are going to be using them to start your own traditions, or  to brighten up the dinner table, these bowls mark the start of the family memories.


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