The Greek city where we live is full of antique shops, many of which have been here for close to a hundred years. This city is unique in Greece in that it has a split population, 50% Greek and 50% Turkish. The Turkish population has lived here for generations but retains its very separate identity. Although the children go to school here and are surrounded by Greek media and people, their command of the Greek language is mediocre (my schoolteacher husband can attest to this), they have a very strong community where they speak Turkish and socialize quite apart from the Greek population. The Turkish population is Muslim and the city is well stocked with mosques and Turkish cultural buildings. One of the most interesting aspects of the Turkish population here is their contribution to the material culture of the town.
Copper-working has a long tradition here in town, as well as embroidery and other crafts. Copper wasn’t really on my radar until a few months before we moved here last summer. When I started researching to decorate our new home, I discovered this fascinating tradition and was blown away when I visited the copper shops here in town – of which there are many.
Although I’ve just started collecting, the pieces that I have are wonderful. I hope you enjoy these pieces, each of which has a secret history. I don’t know how many homes have hosted these pieces, or how many tables they’ve graced. But I’m happy to have them in my home.
This copper tray is huge. Its original purpose was actually to cook phyllo-dough pies, which are very popular here in Greece. I use it as these trays are usually used now: as a table top. I love it because it goes just as well on a side table as on an ottoman or couch (as here) to hold drinks without worrying about spilling. It’s a much more exciting alternative to a standard rectangular tray. I love the incredible patina.
This is probably my favorite piece. This beautiful vessel has an elegantly attached handle and lovely curves. I use this in the kitchen to hold cooking utensils by the stove, and once in a while, to hold a beautiful bouquet of wildflowers.
I use this wonderful pitcher for baking utensils in the kitchen. These first three pieces are from the antique copper shops here in town.
This is a coffee grinder for making Greek (or Turkish) coffee. My husband brought it back from Bosnia. It’s beautiful, but it’s a pain to use, so it’s primarily decorative. Since I have a fantastic grain grinder, I don’t really need another one. This one has probably ground a lot of coffee in its day, though.
This little copper pot is from the Greek city of Xanthi. It’s used exclusively for making Greek coffee.
It came with a wonderful brass stirrer to mix the coffee into the water.
This little guy was actually the first piece in my collection, and is bronze, not copper. It’s from Amman, Jordan.
I just love the lines!
I hope you enjoyed these lovely copper goodies as much as I do!
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