Flatware is the old-school term for cutlery. We stock a good range of vintage flatware, some which we are able to offer exclusively on-line. Our forks, spoons and ladles are usually silver-plated, and our knives usually have faux bone ivorine handles and high-polished stainless steel blades.
Occasionally we are able to source vintage knives with real ivory handles and carbon steel blades. These were made during the latter part of the 19th century or first part of the 20th century when ivory was still a legal material, used also used for piano keys, brushes and dressing table sets. We do, of course, condemn the hunting of animals for their bone, and sell only antique ivory items.
BUYER’S GUIDE FOR VINTAGE FLATWARE
Our vintage cutlery is genuinely old, and is not in production today. As a consequence it will have been previously owned and used, and so will not appear as if brand new. However, all the cutlery we buy and sell in our on-line shop is in very good, if not immaculate, condition.
Wear & Flaws
The cutlery may sometimes include some of the following:
- Minor flaws consistent with the date of manufacture
- Very light wear to the silver plating of forks and spoons, noticeable only on close inspection
- Very fine surface scratching to the blades of knives and their handles
Do call us
If you would prefer to call us to get a completely detailed description of the item you are buying, then please do. We will be delighted to talk to you and, if you would prefer, can also take your payment over the phone.
Ivorine is a form of early plastic, and it replaced ivory and coral in everyday household objects when these animal products became too expensive to come by in the early years of the 20th century. Ivorine is made from xylonite (derived from the Greek word xylon, meaning wood) and is best known for its association with the cellulose nitrate products made by the British Xylonite Co. Ltd. Among the earliest products made from the material were knife handles, imitation coral jewellery and insulating materials for electric cables.
Caring for your flatware
Always hand-wash all vintage flatware in warm soapy water, using a non-abrasive soft dishcloth. Silver polish should be used once every six months on silver and silver-plated flatware, paying particular attention to the tines (the prongs) of forks where tarnishing mainly occurs. This will bring back brilliance and silvery shine.
Never put your vintage flatware in the dishwasher. This will destroy the patina of xylonite knife handles and also wreck the silver-plated finish on forks and spoons. Never use anything abrasive, such as cream cleaner, or a Brillo or scouring pad, as this too will destroy patina and leave fine scratches. Never leave knives with xylonite or ivory handles soaking in water, as this will loosen the handle from the blade.
We do not offer any form of guarantee on vintage goods. However, we assure customers that our flatware will perform the function it was originally designed for.
We cannot refund vintage items if they have been used or are not returned in exactly the same condition they were received in. Please see our Terms & Conditions
Out of Stock
We apologise if we are out of stock of a vintage item you would like to buy. This is because the product is vintage and cannot be ordered in by us, and we have to source these items from all over the country, as and when they become available. We do our best to keep as many products within each range in stock. If we don’t have what you are looking for, please do contact us and we can let you know as soon as the next one arrives at our store.
The measurements given are to within 0.5 cm / ¼” of a dimension. If you need a more exacting measurement in millimeters of the actual item that we will be sending you, then please do contact us first before ordering.
The diameter is the measure taken from the widest part of the circumference of a circular-shaped item, all handles, flanges and spouts excluded.
The width is the measurement taken across the length of a rectangular or square item, at the widest point.
The length is taken from a rectangular or oval item’s longest dimension, any handles excluded.
The height is the measure taken from the foot of the item to the very top, including the lid (if the piece has one).