This is the first and a most comprehensive work on wooden butter shapers, a subject of interest to many folk art authorities and collectors. While working as a Specialist in History for the Museum of Michigan State University, the author, Paul Kindig, examined and photographed all of the major museum collections in the United States and Many private collections. The author has also visited numerous museums in Europe and compared their butter prints and molds with the American successors.
Detailed chapters on hand-made, craftshop-made, and factory-made prints and molds help to identify the methods of construction and patterns associated with each type. The large and exquisitely illustrated center of the book is devoted to the design motifs found on these bearers of wonderful folk art designs. Beautiful color photographs show the tulips, hearts, plant forms, animals, symbols and monograms which can be seen as the American counterparts to coats of arms. Finally, a fascinating section on European collections presents many variations from Continental Europe and Great Britain, bringing the study around to confront its origins.