Vintage Baribocraft woodenware. Canadian vintage, quality crafted and made to last!
Vintage Baribocraft Woodenware. Oh Canada!
One of the things I like for a table setting is the introduction of something made out of wood. Wood warms the look, and there’s nothing better than working with a natural element to make your table feel welcoming.
So imagine how excited I was when I stumbled upon a very cool set of 8 vintage Baribocraft salad bowls in a rich teak coloured stain. It was years ago in a little vintage shop in Horseshoe Bay, British Columbia, and I still use them to this day. Horseshoes tend to indicate good luck, don’t they? I do believe that day was my lucky day!
I love the shape of these bowls. They’re not your traditional round shape, and they really do hold a good individual serving of salad. Ceasar salads are my favourite in these bowls, but I digress. I really want to share a little more about Baribo’s history.
A Little About Baribeau & Fils (Sons) Inc.
Baribeau & Fils (Sons) Inc. was a Canadian company out of Levis, Quebec that was founded in 1922 by Hervé Baribeau. The company was reknowned for their gorgeous wood grained pieces, and known world-wide for their quality craftsmanship and innovative styles.
Baribeau was a company with high standards. They employed extremely skilled Canadian artisans to craft their woodenware accessories from Canadian maple wood, smoothed and buffed to a satin finish. You will find pieces in both the lighter natural colour of the maple wood like the set below, as well as in much darker stains like my bowls above. The darker colour is often mistaken for teak, which is not surprising as teak wood was super popular in Danish Modern furniture and accessories throughout the Mid-Century Modern era (1933-1965).
Baribeau became Canada’s largest producer of woodenware under the trademark of Baribocraft for the retail market, and Baribo-Maid for the wholesale and food service industries. Each produced woodenware pieces for over twenty years, becoming a common household accessory and commercial fixture.
Baribocraft Woodenware: Made for the Retail Market
Baribocraft woodenware was produced for the retail market and sold in specialty shops. The suite of retail items included everything from an assortment of salad bowls large and small, varying sizes of salt and pepper sets, nut bowls with nut crackers and picks, to candle holders, and a whole lot more. You will find the trademark logo of Baribocraft wood burned deeply into the bottom of each piece.
Baribocraft was also famous for their unique arc-shaped fruit bowl. This arc bowl was my very first Etsy purchase long before I ever started Audrey Would! We have never grown tired of it, and if you pop by for a visit you will find this sleek Baribo piece sitting out on our kitchen counter, usually with bananas but often a mix of fruits. In fact, if you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen another Baribo arc dish, slightly larger and in the natural maple colour, featured with an assortment of fruit.
I love this piece for its elegant shape and simplicity, and its beautiful classic lines so typical of the Eames era in Mid-Century Modern times.
Baribo-Maid Woodenware: Made for Wholesale and Restaurant/Food Service Industry
Baribo-Maid represented the wholesale and food service industry, and produced commercial grade woodenware. In fact, British chef, Jamie Oliver has been known to collect Baribo bowls. Apparently Jamie has a soft spot for large wooden bowls, and says the only thing he looks around for is Baribocraft woodenware from Montreal! I think it’s safe to say that if Jamie is a fan of Baribocraft pieces, that says a lot about what you can expect of the Baribo-Maid commercial line too!
Baribocraft and Baribo-Maid Pieces in the Modern World
The following pieces were sourced for Audrey Would!, however they never made it to the listing stage! As these pieces came through the door, one-by-one over the last 5 years, my daughter fell in love! She is now in her early 20’s and the proud owner of a collection of Baribo pieces.
| Café * Coffee | Thé * Tea | Farine * Flour | Sucre * Sugar |
The breadbox and canisters are really a set, and I thought them apropos of not only Baribocraft’s time in the spotlight, but also their French-Canadian roots, being labeled in both French and English. Isn’t it interesting that the words in each language begin with the same letter?
When you look at all these pieces you can sure see how easy it is to mistake them for teak with the reddish colour of each one. It’s amazing how well the maple wood takes to the reddish stain, and isn’t the grain and satin finish lovely?
Baribo Pepper Mill Grinding Hardware
Salt and pepper mill sets were another popular Baribocraft/Baribo-Maid item. In fact I grew up with a set like these, and remember them well…my daughter also snapped this set up! The reason I’m separating them out is because of the pepper mill grinding hardware.
The grinding hardware was known for its lasting quality, and was among the commercial favourites. You will find the heavy duty grinding mechanism firmly inserted in the pepper mill base, and even after years of use, these are often better than many new pepper mills on the market today.
If you look closely you will see Baribo-Maid engraved in the underneath component of the hardware. A great image that represents both trademark divisions of Baribeau & Fils (Sons).
And one last bit of trivia… did you know that Baribocraft made pant hangers?
And hockey sticks, and clothes pegs…the list goes on!
Sadly Baribocraft ceased production in the 70’s and they are no longer in business, but their pieces withstand the test of time!
With proper care, vintage Baribocraft woodenware looks just as stunning today as it did when it was created, maybe even better with the burnished glow to the wood you only get over time. And the quality in craftsmanship of Baribo allows for continued use for as long as you have a use!
Those of you who have followed me over the years are familiar with my design blog, sZinteriors. Though fresh content is no longer being uploaded to that blog, this article was originally posted there. I have updated it here with more information, and added a few new photos as well.
Do you have any Baribo pieces in your vintage mix? What stories do you have to tell?
Thanks for stopping by!
Photographs © Audrey Would! Vintage Home
For more information on Baribocraft and Baribo-Maid, please visit the corporate website or contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org. You’ll be pleased to note, the website is available in both French and English!