A pair of local school children who scooped the top prize from Quadrant Shopping Centre’s ‘Design a Lovespoon’ competition, have had their creations handcarved out of wood and presented to them at the centre.
Launched on St Dwynwen’s Day, the campaign received more than 100 entries. It was Amelia Davies, aged seven, and Ronne Jones, aged eight, both from local Whitestone Primary School who impressed judge, Patricia Price – the proprietor of the Lovespoon Gallery, Mumbles – with their beautiful designs.
Patricia explained: “They were both very different, with Amelia incorporating a more flowing asymmetric shape and Ronne using lovely, personal meanings in hers. Above all, they clearly showed the artistic and romantic tradition in Welsh Lovespoons.”
Lisa Hartley, Quadrant Shopping Centre manager, added: “The number and quality of entries we received for this competition was overwhelming. It seems so many people have a great talent for designing lovespoons and I know Patricia had a difficult job in choosing the best, but Ameilia and Ronne certainly demonstrated their skill for producing impressive concepts.”
As part of the initiative, the centre sent its friends Mike the Maker, carver of lovespoons, and his sweetheart Carys Cariad, to Whitestone Primary and Pennard Primary for fun-packed educational workshops. This gave the opportunity for young learners to discover more about this centuries old tradition where lovespoons were gifted as a display of romantic intent and showed off the intricate carving skills of the craftsman.
The Love Spoon Gallery at Mumbles also ran a one-day event at the centre where there was a pop-up display of the traditional items, with Mike and Carys also in attendance to help promote their meaning.
Lisa concluded: “This is a wonderful Welsh custom that we’re very proud of and want to keep alive through younger generations. The workmanship that has gone into the creation of each and every lovespoon, a profession which continues today, is something we want to always celebrate.”