Jan has been involved in making and collecting folk art since the 1970s. First in Wisconsin, then from her current home in Arkansas, her art has involved painting, woodworking and embroidery. For five years, she created Springerle cookies for Embossed Edibles and went from making cookies to making clay ornaments. We feature a selection of her hand-painted Springerle clay ornaments in our shop.
Springlerle cookies date back to the 14th century, with the oldest known pressing mold coming from Switzerland. The original presses, now in museums or private collections, were carved in clay, metal or wood. Biblical scenes were some of the earliest images of Springerle and were used to educate those who could not read or write. Later, other scenes were carved depicting images of holidays, events and scenes of everyday life. People also gave them as gifts for weddings, births and tokens of love.