It seems you can't hardly flip through a magazine anymore without seeing a vintage toast rack on a desk holding stationary or mail. Don't get me wrong, I use one for the exact same thing on my desk.
But what exactly are they and what was their original purpose.
Well, as the name implies, it held toast. Groundbreaking, genius stuff, huh?
According to the website, Extra Crispy, the earliest print reference to a toast rack was in 1789. They originated in London and are still used in more in the UK than here in America. You will find them in all types of sizes, shapes and materials.
According to Wikipedia, there is some science behind these serving pieces. The large petition gaps in the rack allow the heat to escape the toast in the form of water vapor and helps not get the toast all soggy. Physics was never my thing but this makes sense.
I think the functionality behind the designs of these are so interesting and I love seeing new ones. Handles that are large and easy to hold so you can pass around the table or ones with trays underneath them to catch crumbs are brilliant.
My favorite Toast Racks are the ones with little cups or vessels to hold jelly/jam....they are so charming! The one below would have some kind of metal or glass container you can place in the oval in the middle to hold the jam or jelly.
I actually think this could be a really fun collection to start. Aside from holding mail, my other favorite use for them is to hold napkins and linens.
So, how do you use your toast racks? Do you serve toast cut in diagonal or served whole when you use it for toast?