I unearthed these Guilloché (gee-oh-SHAY) spoons at the Springfield Antiques & Flea Market on a rainy weekend in May. I had never heard of Guilloché, but having been on a cobalt kick for a while, the intensely brilliant blue one caught my eye, and once the incredibly knowledgeable dealer had told me all about it, I knew it had to be mine. Of course, once you become aware of something new you see it everywhere, and I spotted the lemon yellow one minutes later at another booth.
Apparently, Guilloché is a French word that means “engine turning,” and guilloche pieces are created by a machine similar to a lathe that engraves metal with a series of intricate, overlapping patterns. In the late 19th century, Imperial jeweler Carl Fabergé married guilloché engraving with colored enamel, and the trend took off all over Europe.
My blue spoon is of Danish origin, and I’m still searching to determine the history of the yellow one. If you’ve seen one like it, or know anything about it, I’d love to hear from you. Until then, I’m just going to admire the interplay of colors and keep my eyes open for more of this gorgeous goodness at my next Flea…stay tuned.