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“Kransekake” or Ringed Trees for sale

November 20, 2017

“Kransekake” is the Norwegian name for “crown cake, or more specifically “wreath cake,” a unique ringed Scandinavian wedding cake that was my inspiration to design this decorative tree.  I have made thousands of them since about 1982.  Some people think of them as a Christmas tree, and it can be whatever you want once you buy it, but it is based on the wedding cake and does have special meaning for relationships.

I sell my eight inch size for $90, which includes free shipping. The larger sizes are $225 for the 12 inch and $365 for the 16 inch, which include free shipping. 

Kransekake Girl by Suzanne Toftey

A young girl in her bunad shows off the Kransekake cake, which is actually a “tree of rings.”

The Danes and Swedes have their own variation as well.  This decorative tile by Suzanne Toftey shows the Kransekake cake in its setting in Scandinavian festivals, especially weddings.

This historic cake and my tree-of-rings design have rich and ancient symbolism for marriage and loving relationships.  In Northern Europe, both the rings (think wedding rings) and the evergreen shape symbolize never-ending or everlasting.  So the shape is meant to wish the recipients a relationship that lasts forever.

I am a woodturning artist from the Lakes country of Minnesota and also a Lutheran pastor.  I grew up in a Norwegian American ghetto in Northern Iowa and my family has always revered its Scandinavian roots.  I have made many trips to Scandinavia and am much influenced by the art and craft of Northern Europe’s “wood culture.” You can see others of my blogs that share stories of three Norwegian woodturners I have met and photographed.

Kkake blank and then shapedI turn the trees, rings and all, from one piece of local sugar maple and sometimes cherry.  This is a variation of the old woodturner’s trick of “rings on a spindle.”  These rings come from the same piece of wood and are not added later. For many centuries and in many parts of the world, turners have used the rings to add a special decorative touch to their work. You can see the block of 2 1/2 X 2 1/2 X 8 inch maple and then the first shaping into the cone.

The next photo shows the grooves made between the rings and the first 3 rings at the top released. I use a modified skew chisel to undercut the rings fFirst rings cut looserom each side.  It is very delicate work and if I cut too deep, the rings will not stay high and even on the cone.  After I have cut all the rings, I use my skew chisel to smooth the underlying cone’s surface.  If I have cut the rings consistently, I won’t have to cut off too much material and the rings won’t slip too far down the cone.  Click on the pictures below for captions.

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