This box was on my front porch today! (Wrapped in another box.) I thought I would never own these cutters as they are incredibly rare. (A special thank you to my Mother-In-Law and Aunt who gave me Christmas gifts of money!) I am so excited to open them! As you know I am an avid collector and user of Martha by Mail cookie cutters. This set has been long desired! Let’s open them together!
I can’t wait! I had to hold my breath the whole time! Look at the decorating card peeking out! I only have a few of those! (Thankfully, other collectors have made the images all available online.) Here we go! Dive in with me!
Past layers of gorgeousness and crisp tissue paper printed in Martha’s green with honey bees… What beauty will we find?
Here they are! In all their shimmering gorgeousness! Be still my beating heart the Shield and Flag set! The cookies I will make with these!!!
Let’s take a closer look…
The craftsman ship is superb as always, soft edges that won’t hurt your hand, comfortable handles, heft, balance, and quality. Michael Bonne is an artist. There is nothing to be desired from these wonderfully simple, beautiful tools.
I was surprised to see the M with a bee on the stamped mark. I assumed since these were some of the last offered (along with the Diamond Ring and Pedestal Cake set, and the Wreath and Present set) in the catalog before it closed they would have the last used Martha By Mail mark with a bee above and hive below. Maybe I should change my thinking on that. Maybe that mark was only used on the smaller, open-backed cutters later or maybe Michael Bonne (the copper smith and his shop who made all of the copper ware for Martha by Mail) had a lot of stock of the copper strips with the stamp already on them that he used. I will have to do more research. If you have the Ring and Pedestal Cake cutters, or the Wreath and Present cutters would you let me know the marks on them?
I also noticed that the later cutters have very simple names- Flag and Shield, Wreath and Present. Whereas the early ones had elaborate names that were really fun! My favorite names are Starlight Starbright, Perfect Cup of Tea, Neptune’s Seahorse, and Big Tom Turkey. They are expressive! If I had named these new ones I would have picked Shield of Liberty and Grand Old Flag.
But, the real reason I purchased these cutters was not to complete my collection. I don’t want to do that. I’ve never really had the itch to have a complete set of anything if it meant buying things that would not be used or enjoyed. These cutters are great, but their rarity made them expensive and if it were not for one thing I would have probably passed them up.
You see I very much live by the belief that if God blesses me it is then up to me to pass part of that onto others. So as much as possible I give away the cookies I make. Most go to my family and many to our friends. Every year we open our house (another blessing we very much enjoy sharing!) to many of our friends. My husband has friends he rides motorcycles with from all over the country. Many of them come to visit us at the beginning of summer on Memorial Day weekend where we remember those who sacrificed to keep us free and we celebrate the start of my favorite season. Part of getting ready for lots of guests is baking and for years I have wanted this set so I could bake themed cookies for our friends for Memorial Day. This year that will happen! I can’t tell you how excited I am! Stay tuned!
With love and blessings to you from Kansas Street,