Welp, I've been dreaming about brooms lately. Traditional, handmade, bristly, and beautiful brooms. If you're like me and have a thing for well-crafted and simply-designed tools from old times I'm sure you understand and won't turn me in to the crazy people police.
As my current tools around the house start to break down, I am slowly looking to replace them with sturdier, classically-crafted ones that will serve their intended purposes and as pieces of art. One of those tools that needs replacing is my broom. I've gathered my favorite pieces for you and I so that we can get some ideas that will help preserve both the Earth and history.
1. Kitchen Broom | Skagit Broom Works | Stanwood, WA
This beautiful broom is made by Skagit Broom Works, using the broom making methods from the 1800s Shakers who were known for their simple living and craftsmanship. This design is handmade from natural materials including straw, broomcorn, a leather strap and a Pacific Northwest branch that is finished with beeswax. They are made to last for many years, however the company will do repairs if needed and the all natural materials would biodegrade at the end of the broom's life! I love the beautiful knots in the handle and the organic shape of this broom and would love to have it hanging on my wall.
2. Vintage Broomcorn | The Rhubarb Studio | Dayton, Ohio
The Rhubarb Studio has so many intriguing vintage finds, one of which being this beautiful woven broom that was made to sweep the fireplace and hearth. It is a bit smaller and would be great for a short person or a child who likes to help sweep! I love the woven criss-cross handle and the stitching on the sweep.
3. 1950s Fireplace Broom | Wil Shepherd | Chicago, Illinois
"Sailor's whisks" traditionally serve the same purpose as hand whisks except they were made out of small bits of rope by sailors at sea. Jack Tars Locker uses the same kinds of knots and natural manila rope that would have been used hundreds of years ago. Manila rope is made from renewable hemp and it is biodegradable!
9. Large 1940s Paintbrush | 1000 Crows | Cambridge, England
I love how large and sturdy this 1940s paintbrush is and would use it to dust off surfaces and sweep piles into a dustpan. It could be elegantly displayed on the wall with just a nail or you could add a piece of string to hang it by. All of the textures in this brush and the giant staples that were used to hold it together make me so happy.
10. 1940s Horsehair Brush | Copper and Tin | Wisconsin
This gorgeous horsehair brush was originally made by "Scott's Roofing" as a giveaway for advertisement in the 1940s. I love the type on the side as it gives insight to history and how the world worked in previous times. The stitching on the spine of this brush with the elegant white string tying it together is simply beautiful. I would use this brush to lightly dust and sweep surfaces.
Somehow I feel that using any of these brooms and brushes would make sweeping a much more exciting and inspiring task.
Credits: Images #1 & #8 by Kathi Roussel of 5 Gardenias | Image #2 by Skagit Broom Works | Image #3 by Barbara Keenan Bailey of The Rhubarb Studio | Image #4 by Wil Shephard | Images #5 & #6 by Suzette Morgan of The Artifactory Studio | Images #7 & #11 by Copper and Tin | Image #9 by Jack Tars Locker | Image #10 by 1000 Crows | Information on Shakers from Every Culture