Written by Erin Lindholm
An eating utensil with humble origins, the spoon has a surprisingly rich history beyond the kitchen table. From ceremonial spoons of ancient times to spoon rings popular with the free-spirits of the late 1960s and 1970s, spoons have long been imbued with symbolism.
Spoons have been used during elaborate ceremonies (religious and otherwise) in periods dating as far back as ancient Egypt and England in the Middle Ages, including the coronation of kings. The tradition of giving spoons as christening gifts dates back hundreds of years, with origins in the U.K. From this practice came the expression “born with a silver spoon in your mouth.”
For centuries, spoons have been given as tokens of love, as in the Welsh tradition of the love spoon—a carved, decorated wooden spoon. Spoon rings, which were made from the handle of a spoon, are widely considered to have originated in 17th century England. In addition to being made from actual silver, flatware in those times was highly stylized and often decorated with the family’s crest, earning it heirloom status. Popular lore credits spoon rings to the servant class of generations past: Servants would steal a piece of silverware from their employer’s set and have it fashioned into a ring, so that they could give a symbol of love and commitment to their beloved.
Spoon rings experienced a comeback in the late 1960s and 1970s, when hippies wore them during the heyday of Haight-Ashbury and the youthful counterculture that embraced peace, love, and free-spirited rebellion.
Building upon this storied past, ALEX AND ANI has written the next chapter in the history of the spoon ring with designs that symbolize strength and enlightenment: the Hand of Fatima, the PATH OF LIFE, and the Endless Knot, among others. The Precious Spoon Rings Collection honors the spoon’s legacy while also marking the beginning of a new chapter in its rich history.