April 08, 2014

Graceful Designs Perfect for Spring

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Homer Laughlin Fiesta-Peacock (Newer) is an iconic, Art Deco-influenced design with embossed concentric rings at the center of the plate and at the rim. Many of the plates are classified as "coupe", which means the plate has a convex shape, curving up at the side, with no defined, flat edge rim. Fiesta comes in a wide variety of solid colors that can be mixed and matched. Designed in 1936 and showing the strong influence of the Art Deco movement, Homer Laughlin Fiesta is the best-selling dinnerware in American history. Simple shapes and bold colors broke with the ornate, floral dinnerware traditions of the time, and spoke to the emerging casual lifestyle in American households. Company founder Homer Laughlin personally noted customer reactions to different colors that were being considered for the initial release of Fiesta - an early example of consumer focus groups! Today, colors are added and discontinued based on consumer tastes. In addition to an array of older pieces available for "Fiesta" collectors, Replacements, Ltd. also offers wonderful sets of newer pieces in a kaleidoscope of fun colors for setting a great "everyday" table.

Royal Pierpont-Clear is a gorgeous glassware pattern made by one of the best-known tableware manufacturers in the world, Noritake. This graceful blown glass pattern features a concave bowl that flares at the top, a swirl optic design, a pulled stem, and a round foot. Noritake produces many crystal patterns designed to complement its dinnerware. The company's crystal and glassware collection includes pieces made via many different and intricate manufacturing processes, including handmade, mouth-blown stems. Noritake's manufacturing supplies were cut off during World War II, but the company's products again became available in 1948. Many of these post-war wares were created specifically with the American consumer in mind. For Noritake collectors, there are many historical ambiguities surrounding the company; destruction of company records during the war years means that some questions will never be answered.

Old Denmark by Yamazaki Silver is an attractive 18/8 stainless steel pattern featuring a satin finish and a sleek design. Yamazaki Silver has produced the Old Denmark pattern for more than 30 years, beginning in 1981. Other popular Yamazaki patterns include Cara, Cache, Hafnia, and Gone Fishing. Yamazaki literature states, "We pride ourselves on creating and offering stainless flatware and serving accessories that are far from ordinary. From unique flatware patterns that possess fully sculpted handles with carefully finished tines, bowls and blades, to specialized serving pieces of generous proportion and ample size, each Yamazaki pattern has been designed to enhance both your table and dining pleasure."

April 03, 2014

Nature-Inspired British and American Designs

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Produced from 1987 to 2006, the Archive Collection-Cranberry pattern by Spode China comprises a variety of popular, traditional china designs, each in an attractive cranberry color motif. The collection includes such patterns as Willow, Girl at the Well, Jasmine, and our featured design this week, Botanical (first produced in 1820) among others. The opening of Josiah Spode's porcelain factory in the latter part of the seventeenth century coincided with a number of advancements in art and science. The well-to-do industrialists of the time (like Josiah Spode and his family) pursued a variety of fashionable hobbies, including an interest in botanical studies. Starting in the early eighteenth century, traditional oriental designs in English pottery were joined and eventually superseded by floral designs like the one seen in the Spode Botanical pattern. This was made possible, in part, due to advancements in pottery manufacturing. Spode's formula for bone china and the process for 'under glaze' printing for earthenware (both breakthroughs in tableware history) made Spode china beautifully suited to these more elaborate floral designs. Today, Spode patterns are used on the tables of royalty, dignitaries, and ordinary families alike. Because of their technical innovations and a continued commitment to excellence in design, the Spode name has become synonymous with quality tableware worldwide.

Complementing the ornate Archive Collection-Cranberry design this week is the provincial elegance of Mikasa Crystal's French Countryside pattern. This beautiful blown glass design features a flared, multi-optic bowl that rests atop a weighty stem and a round base. The French country or French provincial style is defined by simplicity, symmetry, broad features, and weightiness, all of which accurately describe the French Countryside pattern. One can very easily picture a collection of these pieces being displayed in the tableware cabinet of a French farmhouse! In the early 1930s, Mikasa was established as an international trading company based in Secaucus, New Jersey. The company, while wholly American, looked to Japan for inspiration. Named in honor of Prince Mikasa, the youngest brother of Emperor Hirohito, Mikasa soon established itself as one of the most recognized Japanese brand names in the West. Importing merchandise produced by a network of over 150 manufacturers worldwide, the company itself never attempted to make any of the dinnerware it sold. Rather, the Mikasa branded items were imported from Japan, Ireland, England, France, and Germany. Business exploded in the 1950s, and tableware became the staple business for Mikasa. Customer requests were pouring in from all parts of the country, and department stores including Bloomingdale's and Macy's could not keep enough stock to meet demand. Consumers found Mikasa ceramics to be very strong, versatile, and stylish. By the beginning of the 1960s, Mikasa had established a reputation as "the pioneer of American casual." Today, Mikasa continues to leverage the momentum it has built over the decades since its inception.

Spring Vista by Lenox Flatware is an 18/8 stainless steel pattern featuring a glossy finish, a sprightly floral motif, and a whimsical, asymmetrical design that perfectly complements the Archive Collection-Cranberry china and French Countryside crystal. Lenox China is a great American success story. It was founded in 1889 by Walter Scott Lenox as "The Lenox Ceramic Pottery Company." Born in 1859, Lenox was named for the nineteenth-century Scottish writer, Sir Walter Scott. Lenox grew up in Trenton, NJ, the "Staffordshire of America" of its time. With excellent transportation and good sources of fuel and clay, the state capital of New Jersey became the nation's leading center for ceramics production. Lenox first organized his company as an art studio, producing one-of-a-kind pieces for a select market. By 1897, examples of the company's work were displayed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., and by 1906 the company was producing complete sets of dinnerware. In 1918, President and Mrs. Woodrow Wilson commissioned a set of Lenox for the White House, making it the first American china to grace a U.S. president's table. Lenox added hand-blown lead crystal to its product lines in 1966, and, with the addition of Lenox silver flatware in 1991, Lenox became the first American company to offer the complete tabletop. By the end of the twentieth century, about half the china on dinner tables in the United States was made by Lenox.

March 25, 2014

Flowers for Spring

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A gently scalloped edge with green trim enhances the pink peony and blue and yellow floral designs of Royal Doulton Floradora Green.  The pattern beautifully represents the production excellence associated with the company. Founded as Doulton and Watts in Lambeth, England, in 1815, the company produced both industrial and household ceramics.  John Doulton’s sons, who had joined their father in the business, eventually formed companies of their own.  But turmoil in the British financial markets forced the businesses to dissolve.  In 1853 they reformed as Doulton and Co.  (In 1901, King Edward VII conferred a Royal Warrant upon Doulton and Co. to honor the company’s production of ceramic vessels that successfully filtered pollutants from the water of the Thames River, London’s primary source for drinking water.)

Rogaska Country Gardens crystal features exquisite floral designs and panels cut into the bowl, a multi-sided stem with ball and wafer elements, and starburst cuts on the round foot – this is a gorgeous pattern!  Rogaska was founded in 1665 in the mountains of Slovenia, a region long recognized for its glass making.  While Rogaska uses modern technologies and processes, the heart of the company’s production has been constant since the seventeenth century – the individual glassblower and glass cutter, devoted to the aesthetics of their work.  With generations of skilled artisans in its employ and world-class crystal designers creating new wares, Rogaska is admired in the crystal industry for unwavering quality and magnificent design.

Delicate scroll and floral designs accent the scallop-shaped handles of Irving, sterling produced by Wallace Silver in 1900. Typical of turn-of-the-century sterling, Irving includes blunt-shaped dinner knives with bolsters. Wallace Silver, established in Connecticut nearly two centuries ago, has long been recognized for excellence in tableware craftsmanship. The founder of the company, Robert Wallace, was born in 1815 into a family of silversmiths who had emigrated to New England from Scotland. Apprenticed to William Mix, a renowned Connecticut spoon maker, Wallace purchased a dilapidated grist mill after mastering his trade, and began to produce his own silver flatware in 1833. Irving is just one of many examples of Wallace Silver’s high-quality work.

March 20, 2014

Beautiful Tableware Masterpieces

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Diplomat by Rosenthal/Continental is rimmed, scallop-shaped ivory china with asymmetrical sprays of flowers on the center and rim, and an embossed rim and edge with gold trim. Phillip Rosenthal began his business in 1884 by purchasing white ware and applying designs hand painted by his wife Maria, then selling them door to door. In 1891, he established a factory in Asch, Bohemia and began production of white ware for use in his workshop. From 1897 to 1936, Rosenthal acquired several factories in Germany, and the popularity of patterns like Moss Rose helped the business grow rapidly; by WWII, Rosenthal employed over 5,000 people. When WWII ended, Rosenthal's son, Phillip, returned to Germany where he modernized out of date factories and reestablished lost markets. Phillip quickly rebuilt the business by reaching new customers interested in the modern shapes and artistry of his dinnerware. To this day, Rosenthal continues to work with leaders in fashion and design to create unique and striking tabletop designs.

Minton by Tiffin/Franciscan was produced from 1960 to 1973, and is a stunningly beautiful crystal pattern. The design of Minton features a convex bowl that flares at the top, a knobbed, multi-sided air-bubble stem with an hourglass shape, and a round, clear foot. The upper half of the non-optic bowl is adorned with a gold encrusted band with an ornate floral design. The Tiffin Glass Company was founded in 1888, when the A.J. Beatty & Sons Glass Factory in Steubenville, Ohio, announced that it would be moving its facilities across the state to Tiffin, Ohio. The new plant began production in 1889, and just three years later, A.J. Beatty & Sons merged into the United States Glass Company. By 1963, USGC had gone into bankruptcy, but a year later, Tiffin Art Glass was born, reviving the company's tradition of quality stemware. When Tiffin Art Glass was acquired by the Continental Can Company two years later, it was renamed the Tiffin Glass Company. Tiffin became a division of the Interpace Corporation in January 1976, and introduced the Franciscan Ware line to its manufacture of pressed glass, sandwich glass, white milk glass, and stemware. In 1979, Leonard Silver Manufacturing Company, a division of Towle Silver, purchased the glassworks. Tiffin Glass Company remained under Leonard Silver's control until closing its doors in 1983. Tiffin/Franciscan was long noted for the high quality of its crystal, and the gorgeous Minton pattern featured here is a showcase of craftsmanship and design.

Produced from 1893 to 1991 (almost 100 years!), Gorham Silver Luxembourg is a remarkably graceful flatware pattern. Luxembourg features a playful asymmetrical design and a glossy finish. Luxembourg offers an array of interesting place and serving pieces, including salt spoons, jelly servers, berry forks, cracker spoons, sugar sifters, and much more. This elegant pattern was produced by a legendary American company. Its founder, Jabez Gorham, was born into a family of eight and apprenticed to eighteenth-century New England silver patriarch Nehemiah Dodge at a very early age. In 1831, Gorham founded his own company in Providence, RI. He quickly established a reputation for creating distinctive hand-crafted silver of the highest quality. Gorham Silver's reputation for excellence endures today.

March 11, 2014

Metlox "Provincial-Blue" Tureen

This charming "hen on nest" tureen is from the Provincial-Blue pattern by Metlox Potteries, which was introduced in 1950 as part of the "Provincial" shape debut. Inspiration for this rustic collection of tableware was drawn from early American arts, crafts, home decor, and architecture. Metlox Potteries modeled the "Provincial" shape on rustic potteries, wood carvings, tin molds, baskets, and pewter designs. The incorporation of rooster and hen pieces into the collection added personality and flair to the popular shape.

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Metlox Potteries was founded by T.C. Prouty and his son, Willis Prouty. In 1919, the Prouty Family settled in Hermosa Beach, California. After a year of experimenting with clays and glazes that were derived from the area, the Prouty patented a tile body that was made primarily with talc. In 1921, they opened a company called "Proutyline Products" that primarily sold architectural tiles. In 1927, T.C. and Willis Prouty opened Metlox as a division of Proutyline (the name Metlox was derived from a combination of the words "metal" and "oxide").

Before producing dinnerware, Metlox produced large outdoor ceramic signs. These signs were most popular with new theatres that needed large outdoor signage. As the Great Depression began, T.C. Prouty passed away. His son, Willis, realized the company's need to diversify as demand for large ceramic signs began to dwindle during the Depression era. As a result of this, the company expanded into dinnerware and, in 1932, began to produce the "200 Series" line of dinnerware. This line was also called "Poppytrail." The company garnered a great deal of success from its dinnerware product line.

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In 1938, Metlox began producing miniature figurines which were also very popular with consumers. During the World War II years, Metlox stopped producing dinnerware and began manufacturing shell castings, nuts, and bolts for the war effort. After the war, Metlox attempted to sell toys, but began losing money. In 1946, Metlox was bought by Evan K. Shaw, owner of the Evan K. Shaw Company and American Pottery (best known for its line of Disney figurines). Shaw had the ambitious goal of making Metlox the most profitable dinnerware manufacturer in America. To that end, Evan Shaw hired Bob Allen and Mel Shaw - the creators of the popular Metlox California Provincial pattern - as his art directors. Both Bob Allen and Mel Shaw had a background in drawing cartoons. In fact, Mel Shaw worked on the Disney classics "Bambi" and "Fantasia." In 1958, Faye Bennison, a friend of Evan Shaw's, decided to close Vernon Kilns, another popular ceramics maker. He sold the rights to the Vernonware name to Shaw. Because of this, Metlox Potteries is often called "Metlox, Poppytrail, Vernonware."

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Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Metlox's only real competitor was Franciscan, an immensely popular California maker of dinnerware. During the 1970s, Metlox began to fall out of favor with American consumers when hand-painted dinnerware patterns with large selections of piece types were no longer desirable. While having almost no foreign competition up to this point, Metlox began to face increasing competition from popular Japanese firms. By 1989, the company was no longer able to remain open, and shut its doors in May of that same year.

March 04, 2014

Spectacular French and American Artistry

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Inspired by eighteenth-century Venetian porcelain, Ceralene Guirlandes is a gorgeous pattern richly decorated with hued floral garlands interspersed with dark green trim. The center design is a cheerful bouquet surrounded by sprigs of foliage. Ceralene is produced by Raynaud, a manufacturer known and recognized as being a leader in applied art in tableware design. Raynaud was established in Limoges, France, a city 200 miles southeast of Paris, world-renowned for its artistry in fine porcelain. According to the Raynaud website, "Raynaud has upheld its custom of producing resplendent relief shapes, gilt decorations and engraved tableware whose signature hallmarks have transcended generations." The Guirlandes pattern is a wonderful example of Raynaud's dedication to superior quality and design.

Seneca Cut 870 is an alluring blown glass pattern featuring a concave bowl that flares at the top, an intricate polished and gray cut bowl design with floral and garland elements, a multisided stem, and a round foot with a cut design. The Seneca Glass Company opened in Seneca County, OH, in 1891, using immigrant glassworkers from Germany's Black Forest region. The company soon relocated to Fostoria, OH, in a former plant of the Fostoria Glass Company. In 1896, the Seneca Glass Company again changed locations - moving to Morgantown, WV, where newly discovered natural gas deposits provided ample and relatively cheap fuel for firing, and river and railroad transportation were available to move the company's wares. Diversity of products, the use of various decorative techniques in a variety of colors enabled Seneca Glass Company to find success in a highly competitive market. Depression-era production included clear glass, cobalt blue, and light green, topaz, and additional colors, according to authors Bob Page and Dale Frederiksen in their book, "Seneca Glass Company 1891-1983: A Stemware Identification Guide." Production of glassware in a wide spectrum of colors would become one of Seneca's trademarks in the 1970s. Hues included "Accent Red" (ruby), "Amber," "Buttercup" (yellow), "Cinnamon" (brown), "Delphine Blue" (light blue), "Ritz Blue" (cobalt), "Sahara" (light amber), "Gray" (smoky), "Moss Green" (dark green), "Lime Green," "Peacock Blue," "Black," and "Plum" (amethyst). Seneca also holds the distinction of being the last American-made lead crystal stemware to be sold by Tiffany & Company.

Christofle (France) Brienne is a stylish sterling pattern that features an elegant floral and garland motif, and a glossy finish. Christofle began production of Brienne in 1991, and the understated design and floral motif showcased in this pattern are excellent complements to the Guirlandes and Cut 870 designs. Christofle was founded in France in 1830 by jeweler Charles Christofle. After purchasing a patent for an electroplating technique in 1842, Christofle opened a large factory that was one of the first factories in the world to use electricity. By 1855, the quality of Christofle's products had garnered such acclaim that Emperor Napoleon III appointed Charles Christofle official purveyor to the French court. Christofle literature states, "Christofle has always seen its name associated with major creative trends, renowned artists such as Man Ray or Jean Cocteau, avant-garde architects such as Gio Ponti, and modernist silversmiths such as Lino Sabattini and Christian Fjerdingstad, as well as present-day designers such as Andree Putman, Martin Szekely or Ora ito. Today, as in the past, whether gracing the tables of emperors, princes, or maharajas, in palaces on board the Trans-Siberian Railway, Orient Express, or transatlantic ocean liners ... Christofle continues to make an impression."

February 25, 2014

Bold, Vibrant American Designs

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The Maderia-shaped Floral  pattern by Franciscan was produced from 1971 to 1977, and is adorned with a bold, richly hued floral center design and thin green bands around the border. When California-based Franciscan tableware premiered in 1934, it was practically an overnight success. The glamour of the emerging film industry and the state's climate seemed exotic to Midwesterners and those living on the East Coast. The "Golden State" became a very popular tourist destination. And Franciscan's bright-colored, less expensive "earthenware" grew in popularity as American consumers began to recover from the Great Depression. Apple was one of four patterns in the company's now legendary line of hand-painted, raised-pattern designs that included Desert Rose, Fresh Fruit, and Ivy. Ivy was even featured on the sets of the "I Love Lucy" show with Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, and the "Donna Reed Show," which ran on broadcast TV 1958-1966.

The handcrafted design of Franciscan Crystal Madeira-Cornsilk showcases  an approximately square, textured bowl that flares at the top, a multi-sided stem, a textured foot, and a sunny yellow color. The Madeira crystal pattern was produced from 1970 to 1978 as a way to capitalize on Franciscan's success in the casual tableware market. The heavy lead crystal of Madeira was hand pressed and textured to emphasize its handcrafted, almost rustic design. In addition to cornsilk, Madeira was produced in a variety of colors: blue, citron, clover, ice, olive, pearl, plum, pumpkin, rancho ruby, rose (pink), and smoke, and in piece types that included goblets, sherbets, juice/wine glasses, iced tea glasses, highballs/tumblers, double old fashioneds, carafes, mugs, and ice tubs. Madeira became a popular crystal pattern - enough so that in 1974, Franciscan promoted Madeira as "America's favorite casual crystal."

Oneida Omni is a stylish, satin finish stainless steel flatware pattern featuring a sleek, modern design. Produced by Oneida from 1980 to 1988, the formal elegance of Omni is the ideal complement to the more casual designs of Floral china and Madeira-Cornsilk crystal. The Oneida company grew out of the original Oneida Community founded in upstate New York by John Humphrey Noyes more than 150 years ago. This Christian communal society was based upon the principles of individual self-perfection and shared property. Women bore the same duties as men, and individual responsibilities varied from day to day. Many inventions were developed at Oneida - including some of the world's most recognizable, high-quality, and beautifully designed flatware.

February 18, 2014

Sophisticated Japanese Tableware Artistry

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Produced from 1995 to 2004, the Palazzo pattern by Sasaki China showcases a provocative, asymmetrical design. Featuring various warm, rich colors and eye-catching geometric decorations, this pattern will add excitement to any table! "Palazzo," Italian for "palace," comes from the Latin word "palatium." The word is derived from "Mons Palatinus," one of the seven hills of ancient Rome, where Augustus Caesar's house was constructed. By the time Octavian succeeded Julius Caesar to become Roman emperor, the name of the Palatine hill had become synonymous with imperial residency. Sasaki was established in Tokyo in 1902, and has long been recognized for its design artistry and the high quality of its tableware. Sasaki's Double Helix flatware, designed by famous American interior designer Ward Bennet, is on permanent exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Renaissance-Gold by Sasaki Crystal is a blown glass pattern produced from 1991 to 1999. Renaissance-Gold features a concave bowl that flares at the top, a graceful stem with a twist design, and gold trim. With its elegant shape and understated design, this crystal serves as a wonderful complement to the multi-hued Palazzo china and black and gold Ramona flatware. Although Renaissance-Gold is a popular Sasaki Crystal pattern in its own right, our most popular Sasaki Crystal is the beautiful Wings pattern, designed by Etuso Yamagishi. According to Sasaki company literature, "Sasaki remains firmly rooted in Japanese sensibility, taking its inspiration from nature. This inspiration results in natural, organic shapes and clean lines evident in all of the company's dinnerware collections." Sasaki's designs come from a large pool of creative talent, including furniture, jewelry, and textile designers, architects, interior decorators, and sculptors.

Ramona by Yamazaki Silver is an 18/8 stainless steel pattern featuring a glossy finish, a gold and black ribbed handle, and an asymmetrical design. Yamazaki Silver produced the Ramona pattern from 1988 to 2002. Other popular Yamazaki patterns include Cara, Cache, Hafnia, and a most popular (and playful!) Yamazaki Silver pattern: Gone Fishing. Yamazaki literature states, "we pride ourselves on creating and offering stainless flatware and serving accessories that are far from ordinary. From unique flatware patterns that possess fully sculpted handles with carefully finished tines, bowls and blades, to specialized serving pieces of generous proportion and ample size, each Yamazaki pattern has been designed to enhance both your table and dining pleasure." Since 1980, Yamazaki has produced a range of stainless steel hollowware that includes serving bowls, salt and pepper shakers, ice buckets, wine coolers, and many more items.

February 11, 2014

Design Excellence From Wedgwood & Gorham

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Runnymede-Blue by Wedgwood China is traditional fine bone English china, produced between 1972 and 1998. It features a pink shell design with scrolls set against a sharp cobalt blue background, a floral center design, and a golden yellow band around a smooth rim. Wedgwood China was founded in 1759 by Josiah Wedgwood I as the "Ivy House Works" in Burslem, England. Josiah, in addition to being an entrepreneur, was a conchologist, a person intensely interested in the study and classification of seashells. He was a regular on the beaches of England, always searching for rare shells to add to his collection and to use as subjects for modeling new dinnerware patterns and pieces. (His son, Josiah II, would later hire the Romantic poet and visionary artist, William Blake, to prepare engravings for the company's catalog.) A great example of the seashell heritage at Wedgwood is the gorgeous Runnymede-Blue pattern featured here.

Produced between 1960 and 1999, Cherrywood-Clear by Gorham Crystal is a classic crystal design, concave-shaped and flaring at the top, with criss-cross cuts in a fan design on the bowl. The stem is multi-sided, with a round foot. The unique faceted cuts in Cherrywood sparkle like diamonds and change any table setting from ordinary to extraordinary, adding a sparkle and brilliance that is breathtaking!

Named after the famous French palace of Chantilly, Gorham's Chantilly pattern is the most popular sterling flatware pattern ever produced. Chantilly's graceful border and floral designs were inspired by the Rococo style of early eighteenth century France.  During the reign of King Louis XV, Rococo emerged in response to the heavier, highly ornate art of the late Baroque period. Rococo comprised elaborate designs with playful swirls, scrolls, and decoration. The Chantilly pattern features a distinctive scroll design with fleur-de-lis accents. According to Gorham literature, Chantilly is "essentially a pattern that will appeal to those who seek in the family silver a certain simplicity with just enough ornament to relieve it of the appearance of plainness."  Gorham Silver's founder, Jabez Gorham, was born into a family of eight and apprenticed to eighteenth-century New England silver patriarch Nehemiah Dodge at a very early age. In 1831, Gorham founded his own company in Providence, RI. He quickly established a reputation for creating hand-crafted silver of the highest quality. Gorham Silver's reputation for excellence endures today.

January 30, 2014

Daum Crystal Elephant Figurine

This fun, free-form crystal elephant figurine was produced by the world-renowned Daum Crystal company. This superbly crafted piece features a wonderfully whimsical depiction of an elephant with oversized ears and trunk lifted skyward. This figurine is an exquisite example of Daum's crystal design expertise.

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The story of Daum begins in 1887, when Jean Daum opened a glassworks in Nancy, France. The company quickly hired talented artists and Jean Daum's son, Antonin, opened the company's first art studio in 1891. In 1900, the company took part in the Universal Exhibition in Paris, France, where it was awarded the exhibition's Grand Prix. After experiencing a surge in popularity following the Universal Exhibition, Daum began working with the renowned French artist, Emile Galle. Daum and Galle opened the Ecole de Nancy, a school which is considered by some to be the vanguard of the Art Nouveau movement.

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Around this time, Daum contributed to the rediscovery of an ancient glassmaking technique known as "pate de verre." In this process, glass (typically colored glass, but not always) is ground to a consistency ranging from a powder to larger, more granular particles. This paste of glass particles is then spread or packed into a mold, which is then fired in a kiln at a very high temperature to fuse the glass particles. The mold is then broken, and the object is released. Daum became famous for their pate de verre crystal pieces throughout the 20th century, and Jacques Daum further refined the process in 1968.