A Short History of the Spoon

March 02, 2015

No matter where you go in the world, whether you’re chowing down with chopsticks, your fingers or a fork, you’re almost certain to still come across a spoon.


Antique silver spoons from La Paz, Bolivia


Silver spoons from La Paz, Bolivia, | Tuareg Spoons from Marrkaech, Morocco, | Wooden spoons from Oaxaca, Mexico, | Horn spoons from Hanoi, Vietnam,

One of the oldest utensils, spoons are thought to date back to 1000 BC and were originally made from wood or flint. We discovered these vintage carved wooden spoons in Marrakech, Morocco. The Tuareg, nomadic Berbers who live in the Sahara Desert, would have used these spoons to ladle eghajira, a sweet thick drink made with millet, goat cheese, dates and sugar.

Today wooden spoons still seem to make sauces taste just that much better, and we love the simplicity of these striped wooden spoons hand made in Oaxaca, Mexico. Everyday spoons found in most local markets, they’re used in homes across the state of Oaxaca to make delicious hot chocolate or mole.

By the Middle Ages, wooden spoons were replaced with spoons made of horn and pewter. These serving spoons are from Thuy Ung, a village on the outskirts of Hanoi in Vietnam that has been crafting objects from buffalo horn for more than four hundred years.

By the 15th Century, spoons started getting fancy, and silver spoons were a way of showing power and prestige. We found these antique silver spoons in La Paz, Bolivia, but they originally come from Potosi in Southern Bolivia. Founded in 1545, Potosi’s main attraction to the Spanish was the shiny silver stuff mined from the “Cerro Rico” or “Rich Mountain.” Today, most of the silver is gone, and Potosi once known as the Paris of South America, is a shadow of itself without its booming mining industry.

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