History of Welsh Love spoons

Hand Made In Wales by Ken

Lovespoons are one of the most unique Celtic or Welsh gifts available.  The lovespoons on this website are all hand-crafted by Ken in the Welsh countryside in Llanarth, which is between Aberaeron and New Quay on the West Wales coast.

The centuries old Welsh custom of giving a love spoon meant that a would-be suitor gave a love spoon to a girl as an indication that he wished to court her.A girl may therefore have received several love spoons from as many suitors.

The oldest surviving spoon, made in 1667 is to be found at the Welsh Folk Museum at St. Fagans near Cardiff, although it is known that lovespoons were made by the menfolk of Wales before this date.

Sailors and other young men would while away long winter evenings carving a piece of wood to make a spoon for their loved one.

Today, few people make love spoons themselves but buy spoons that have been manufactured by professionals.  These may have been made by a variety of methods ranging from those made as a result of the use of computerised machines to cut out the shape of the spoons to those that are made entirely by hand.  Some are even made cheaply abroad.

The giving of a lovespoon is no longer confined to men; women give them too.

Love spoons are symbolic and have several meanings. To begin with the spoon itself suggests that the suitor will help the girl to food, for which they were originally designed. Later they became more ornamental with long handles and the means by which they would be hung on the wall.

Designs on love spoons are also symbolic; for instance a heart means, “my heart is yours”. Lovespoons with cages, in which run wooden spheres, indicate that the carver would like children and the number he desired would be indicated by the number of spheres. Double spoons indicate “togetherness” and a key, “the key to my heart”

Today lovespoons are given for many reasons and to mark many occasions; the engagement of a couple, their marriage, the arrival of their child, its christening, a wedding anniversary, Valentine’s day, a birthday, graduation, Christmas, Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day or as wedding “favours”.