Sometimes something as simple as a silver teaspoon can lighten a woman's heart! This utilitarian culinary tool was designed to be used for stirring or sipping a cup of tea. But most of us use it for so much more! We use it for eating cereal or ice cream from a bowl; for serving sauces or dips; or for scooping into a sugar bowl so we can sprinkle sugar on cereal or tea. Some of us even treasure the lowly teaspoon for the beauty it brings to our home. Silver teaspoons in a pressed glass pitcher look beautiful on a sideboard or hutch. A cluster of teaspoons bundled into one stack and tied with a satin ribbon becomes a lovely accessory when set on a lace doily and end table. Sometimes silver teaspoons are tied with fishing line and are hung from an object to make a kitchen wind chime. From tea service to home decor, the silver teaspoon serves many purposes as it becomes an object of hospitality.
When setting a tea table with a teaspoon, it requires a quick check in an etiquette book to determine proper placement. Most entertainers place it next to the knife, but it really belongs with the teacup and saucer. The cup and saucer belong next to the plate and flatware. The teacup and saucer are placed to the right when table setting and the teaspoon belongs on the table to the right of the saucer. All alone without fork or knife, its gracious charm can shine!
Some are reluctant to use silver teaspoons because they think they are too much work to maintain. Silver tarnishes when exposed to air and over time silver turns from silver to gray and black. Polishing with silver polish does not take much time, but an even more simple technique is to place silver teaspoons in a sink of warm, soapy water. Add a foot or two of aluminum foil, all crumpled up, and let the silver soak for a few hours. Then wash and dry as usual. The tarnish should wipe right off!
When reviewing guidelines for teaspoon etiquette, one can smile at the comical rules they explain. I am even reluctant to repeat them, but I think you might enjoy an overview and a smile as well:
*Do not use sweeping circular motions when stirring your tea. Instead, place your teaspoon at the six o'clock position and fold the liquid towards the twelve o'clock position two or three times.
*Do not leave your teaspoon in your teacup. Instead, place it on the right side of your saucer.
The lovely little teaspoon. Utilitarian. Useful. Yet a tiny object that brings joy, especially when used to stir a superb cuppa tea!