Hello Elaine -
I don't know if your intention is to forge a spoon, but I was taught
to forge the long feeding spoon from 4 gauge square sterling wire.
It was hard to find 4 gauge wire - but at that time, I was able to
find some from Hauser and Miller. I was shown to avoid forging the
area were the spoon bowl meets the handle - which allows the
thickness of material needed for strength in that area. It is many
rounds of hammering/annealing to form the spoons. I love watching
the way the spoon takes form.
For the shorter spoon that the toddler uses to feed themselves - I
would start with 8 gauge sterling sheet and saw out a short skinny -
slightly spoon shaped blank. The starting blank size needed to be
calculated. The same principal of leaving thickness where the
strength is needed was applied. I was shown the sensitivity of
leaving slight thickness at the edges of the bowl of the spoon and
the end of the handle as well, for comfort and durability of use.
Fine tuning the thickness of the silver also added to the aesthetic
wholeness of the shape. It's a very satisfying process to forge a
I've tried pouring an ingot to use for forging a spoon - but with
the porosity in the ingot (because of my inexperience) - it made that
way undesirable. Taking the time to saw the blank from the clean
sheet metal was worth it! I still would like to work on my ingot
pouring skills - it's a great way to use scrap silver.
Once when making a large serving spoon for a wedding gift, I used
the from the Rupert Finegold and William Seitz book
"Silversmithing" - to calculate the starting size of the spoon
blank. It was fascinating how accurate the size worked out - to not
waste any silver. This book was a great resource for any smithing
projects that I pursued.
Anyhow, that was my basic experience and approach to making spoons.
Have fun and Aloha,