Happy US Independence Day -
By gaabi, 2016-07-04
(I sent this out as a broadcast email but putting up a blog, too)
Happy 4th of July to All!
If you're a US citizen, enjoy the fireworks and we wish you and your family a wonderful day, full of great fireworks and whatever fun you want!
If you're not, we wish you a wonderful day today and please think fondly of us here in the US, even though according to Quentin Whistleton Thynne, our lease is almost up .
Happy US Independence Day!
#009; font-size: 120%; text-align: right; padding-right: 20px;"> from Ceri and Gaabi at AmeriCymru
Oldest Museum in Wales threatened by financial cuts
By gaabi, 2016-01-07
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons" href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3ASwansea_Museum_(geograph_3954679).jpg">
Swansea Museum was opened in 1841 and WalesOnline reports that it is now facing possible closure or closure of portions of its collection due to financial cuts. The museum is run by the Swansea council, which was reported to have a 50% cut in cultural services.
Its collections and exhibitions are pretty amazing looking, you can see them here: http://www.swanseamuseum.co.uk/
I hope it doesn't close, I want to go see it!
Playing with guerilla marketing for the West Coast Eisteddfod
By gaabi, 2012-09-23
200 PAPER DAFFS ( SEE PICS BELOW ) WILL BE PLANTED AROUND PORTLAND. FIND ONE AND BRING IT ALONG TO THE WEST COAST EISTEDDFOD FOR $2 OFF AT THE DOOR!!
I have to make some fliers for this year's West Coast Eisteddfod in Portland. In the past, the best promo lines for us, with the greatest return, have been online and we do lots of marketing there but I always want to find things that will bring more local, non-Welsh-ish people to our event so that makes handbills, fliers and posters important.
I think less and less people will pick up a flier or a handbill or bother to read or keep one if you hand it to them so I'm brainstorming on ways to make them more interesting and more memorable, on a tiny non-profit budget! I had the idea to do handbills as a pinwheel so that's what I'm trying, a little red dragon and black text on a yellow background, attached to bamboo skewers with a push pin - the prototype has a clear push pin but I'm going to replace that with an orange push pin to make it more daff like. We'll stick in the ground all over town and I was thinking I might add a "bring this in for $2 off at the door" offer on it.
I was thinking I'd also reverse the direction of the dragon and make the "petals" more rounded - - what does anyone think?
And, two pix of Ceri with it and sticking it in the ground -
David Western does musical lovespoons!
By gaabi, 2012-09-13
David Western sent me this cool video, he and some friends have done a musical video ad for his lovespoons, complete with Dave singing an original song in praise of lovespoons - please like it and share it!
My New Book!!! - David Western
By gaabi, 2012-04-01
Reproduced with kind permission from David Western's Portland Lovespoon Blog
My new book has just gone through the final editing stage and is now scheduled to go to the printers!
It will be far-and-away the most thorough book detailing the origins, traditions and craft of the lovespoon and I am more than a little bit excited to see it reaching this stage of production! I spent a lot of time researching lovespoons in public and private collections and quickly realized that the lovespoon tradition is a much broader one than I had originally thought. From Sweden to Romania, most European countries engaged in some form of romantic wooden spoon carving and my quest to discover historical spoons hidden in out-of-the-way places was a great adventure!!. For me, visiting the museum collections first-hand or gazing through astonshing photo collections was like being a kid turned loose in a candy store; I stuffed myself on new discoveries until I thought I was going to burst!
I can only hope that with this book, I will have done some justice to this remarkable tradition. At the very least, I hope it encourages others to undertake some research which may one day demystify more and more of the lovespoon's hidden past.
From a historical viewpoint, it is a sad thing that the lovespoon was primarily a tradition of the 'poorer' classes and so attracted precious little interest from social observers of the time. Much of the lovespoon' lore has thus been cobbled together from supposition and fanciful marketing with much of it being distinctly suspect. Hopefully, some of the discoveries and theories I mention in the book will ignite some debate among lovespoon enthusiasts and collectors and will lead to newer and more accurate observations on the lovespoon's traditions and meanings.
I know my own thoughts and beliefs about the lovespoon have changed fairly dramatically since I started researching this little book and it will be interesting to see what kind of response it generates!
But the book isn't all history. The lovespoon is an evolving tradition (like all good traditions) and it is through the work of current carvers that the art of carving them will continue and broaden. I have been extremely fortunate to enjoy the great support of many of my contemporaries who have shared photographs of their beautiful work, have debated lovespoon history and have provided me with the encouragement I often needed to press on as a lovespoon carver! Without a doubt, the 'modern' section of this new book is going to be an eye-opener for both those new to lovespoons and to those who think they have seen it all!! To see the work of carvers as diverse as Alun Davies, Mike Davies, Sion Llewellyn, Laura Jenkins Gorun, David Stanley, Adam King and Ralph Hentall all together in one place is my personal highlight of the book! I know that it will be for plenty of others too.
History of Lovespoons is published by Fox Chapel Publishing and is available for pre-order from all the very finest and most reputable book dealers!!