Thursday, October 15, 2015

Attending a Questers Chapter Meeting

Last night I was invited to attend a Questers chapter meeting.  I've attended two of their fund raising luncheons before, and blogged about the beautiful tablescapes, but this was the first meeting I've attended.

Questers is a non-profit international organization founded in 1944.  The purpose of Questers is to research and study antiques.  Chapters are formed with eight members or more, and eight meetings a year are held.

Barb Ferencz is President of Allen Park's River Park Farms Chapter.  I'm not sure when her chapter was formed, but I know it was many years ago.  Their meetings are currently held at Dearborn Historical Museum's McFadden-Ross House.

I learned at last night's meeting that there are 69 Questers chapters in Michigan with a total state membership of 974.   15 ladies attended last night's meeting.

Each month a chapter member presents a program, and last night's program was 'Yesterday's Silver for Today's Table'.  Linda Pudlik presented the program, and had an extensive display of silver flatware and reference books.

She told us about over 40 serving pieces dating as far back as the Victorian era, from bouillon spoons to bread forks, and asparagus servers to grape snips. It was very informative and interesting.  

She shared that lemon and vinegar are enemies of silver.

Each piece that she talked about was passed around for everyone to look at.

At the conclusion of her demonstration and refreshments, there was a 'show and tell' time where attendees brought their pieces of silver to share.

I was going to take my Russian samovar, but decided it was too big, and took one of my vintage brandy warming spoons instead.  Most know about samovars, but the spoons are unique and less common.  If used for flaming coffee, they're called Café Royale Spoons, but for flaming tea [oolong tea preferably] they're called Café Broulee [or broulet] Spoons. They are interchangeable, and there's no difference between them.  Below is my spoon cabinet where some of my vintage spoons are displayed.

A close-up of the brandy warming spoons with prongs that fit over the cups.

I have blogged about the spoons and the dramatic flaming oolong tea presentation four different times.  To see those posts just type 'flaming oolong tea' in the search box in the upper left corner.

I only took a china teacup, spoon and sugar cube for last night's presentation and left the brandy warmer, tea and cognac home.  I did, however, take a copy of a 2011 magazine article I wrote about flaming oolong tea, so they could see all the components of the ritual.

It was a fun and educational evening which I enjoyed very much!  Thanks Barb and Linda for inviting me to be a guest at your chapter meeting.


  1. Sounds like an interesting group and certainly an interesting program!

  2. Oh, that would have been interesting Phyllis - isn't that your friend Linda? Hope you enjoy your membership and will share some tidbits now and then.

  3. Oh, now you know I would LOVE a group like that! Seeing all that beautiful silver must have been so much fun, too!


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