Goddess Vase - Misty Morn Vase - Kedvesh Vase - Lotus Bud Vase - Etched Jain Vase
The Carnival Glass of India, Part 5
Indian Carnival Vase ID Guide:
Etched Frosted Vases and One-of-a-kind Vase Patterns
An undocumented Indian carnival vase,
made of etched frosted and iridiscent marigold glass
photo by oxbeetle
This is Part 5 of a twelve-part guide on Jain and other Indian carnival glass. This section is an ID guide on Jain's one-of-a-kind and frosted etched vases. Parts 2, 3 and 4 of this guide also feature Indian carnival vases; to visit other sections of this guide, see the Table of Contents at the bottom of the page. This guide was made possible by the many E-Bayers who contributed photographs to this project. Please leave feedback by clicking the button at the bottom of the page.
As shown in Parts 2-4 of this guide, most Indian carnival glass vases fall easily into categories: hourglass-shaped Goa vases, bulb-shaped vases, and hand and animal vases. A few Indian vases, however, defy categorization: these include a small number of vases made with an unusual etched frosted treatment, and one-of-a kind vases in the Indian carnival patterns known as Goddess, Kedvesh, Lotus Bud, Plain Jain, Paneled Fish Palms and Drapery Rose. All of these were probably issued in India in the 1930's, but in many cases, makers remain uncertain. Examples of some of these vase are shown here.
Etched Frosted Vases
A Jain Misty Morn etched vase
showing design on front and back of vase
photos by oxbeetle
A handful of Indian carnival vases are made in a style pioneered by Jain: they feature iridized marigold patterns on a frosted background. Such vases are hard to come by and rarely appear on E-Bay. According to the Standard Companion to Non-American Carnival Glass, the vases were issued by Jain Glass Works in the 1930's.
As noted in sections 7-9 of this guide, which feature Jain's frosted marigold pitchers and tumblers, Jain's etched frosted pieces appear to have been made by a process something like the following: the surface of a finished mold-blown glass vase was treated with an acid-resistant resin, wax or oil. This may well have been effected by transferring a design stenciled onto paper with acid-resistant ink. Acid was then applied to the vase surface, giving it a rough and semi-transparent or "frosted" look, but leaving the areas applied with an acid-resistant coating clear. These areas were then iridized through treatment with a hot metallic oxide.
Buyers should note that Indian carnival etched marigold pieces vary greatly in quality. On some, the iridized marigold patterns are distinct and detailed, and the iridescence a thickly applied and rich golden-orange. On others, the patterns are blurred and the iridescence thin and washed-out. Thus, before investing in scarce etched vases such as those shown here, buyers should inquire about the quality of the workmanship of individual pieces.
Various carnival glass authorities have documented seven frosted etched marigold Jain vase patterns. These include Fish vases, which are shown in Parts I and III of this guide. In addition, there are six other vase patterns that are similar in size and shape to the Misty Morn vase shown above. Such vases usually run 6-7" high and have bodies shaped like bottom-heavy hourglasses, ruffled slightly flared tops and flat bases. The vases generally are decorated with a pattern of single or double marigold rings circling the neck; under the rings are repeated marigold designs representing Indian flora or fauna. The vases' bodies are frosted from the top rim to the bottom edge, and the undersides of the bases are iridized marigold.
The Misty Morn vase shown above bears a twice-repeated pattern of aquatic flowers with leafy stems. Edging the bottom of the design is a narrow marigold ring, and under this, a band of parallel marigold stripes set perpendicular to the ring. This pattern appears in the Standard Encylopedia of Carnival Glass, 11th ed., at p. 189. The vase shown here is 6 1/4" tall.
The five other frosted-marigold vase patterns similar in shape to Misty Morn vases have been named Feeding Birds, Flying Geese, Frosted Indian, Frosted Lotus, and Indian Cameo. To date, no single resource shows all of Jain's known etched frosted vase patterns, and thus identifying one may require you to consult several books and websites. In addition, the highly reflective, almost mirror-like surfaces of these vases makes photographing them difficult, and thus the patterns are often hard to distinguish in many of the available photographs documenting them.
Nevertheless, photographs of Jain's etched frosted vases can be sought in the following places. A photograph of a frosted-marigold Jain vase in the pattern called Feeding Birds is featured at the website of the Association of the Carnival Glass Collectors Association of Australia (carnivalglass.org.au/Gallery 6.htm); this pattern shows a feeding bird roosting in a leafy bush. Flying Geese, Frosted Lotus and Indian Cameo vases are shown in the Standard Companion to Non-American Carnival Glass at pp. 129, 137 and 177. Flying Geese features just what its name implies -- a design incorporating a repeated pattern of geese on the wing. Frosted Lotus features a repeated pattern of large lotus blossoms encircling the top half of the vase. The photograph of the Indian Cameo pattern shown in the SCNCG is indistinct and the vase's design is nearly impossible to discern. A Frosted Indian vase is featured in the 11th edition (2008) of the Standard Encyclopedia of Carnival Glass, at p. 119. The marigold design of Frosted Indian closely resembles that of Misty Morn; the differences between the two pattens are not elucidated in the SECG or clarified by the photograph offered there.
Previously undocumented Indian Ocean vase
photos by oxbeetle
In addition to these documented patterns, a new Indian carnival frosted-marigold vase appeared on E-Bay in September, 2008. This vase, tentatively named Indian Ocean vase, is shown directly above and at page top. The iridescent design on the frosted vase is richly colored and detailed. The vase has a ruffled mouth and iridized base, similar to that of many of Jain's frosted-marigold vases, but it lacks the typical bottom-heavy hourglass shape and the double marigold rings encircling the vase neck. The front and back of the vase feature an illustration of two sea creatures facing each other:
Details of vase design
on previosuly undocumented Indian Ocean vase
photo by oxbeetle
The creatures depicted have fish-like faces, gill-slits, scales, several legs and long feathery tails. On the other two sides of the vase, the tails form a symmetrical image that looks like seaweed (see top right photo). This Indian Ocean vase is smaller than other documented frosted-marigold Indian carnival vases -- 5" high with a 3 7/8" base. This vase was introduced to E-Bay in September, 2008, by E-Bayer bottleman. It was found in the Firozabad area of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.
One-of-a-Kind Vase Patterns
A rare Jain Goddess vase
photos by bug54 and (right) bottleman
Goddess Vase: Goddess vases were issued by Jain Glass Works in the 1930's. According to Glen & Stephen Thistlewood, authors of A Century of Carnival Glass (p. 179), Goddess vases feature "an ornate and richly decorated (presumably) female figure, arms held upward, undoubtedly representing a deity or similar figure". The figure is stylized and geometric, described by the Standard Encyclopedia of Carnival Glass, 11th ed., p. 124, as "a complicated pattern [that] appears to be a group of unrelated designs consisting of a mask-like section, and other parts that look like floral cones, simplified ridge rows and other figural forms". The front of the vase depicts a woman's face surrounded by a headdress; the goddess wears a heavy, sweeping dress with embroidered panels. Goddess vases are found in marigold, and run 7" 1/2 to 8" high. The vase is one of two Indian carnival vases still deemed "rare" by the SECG; the vase shown above right sold on E-Bay in 2008 for $173.50.
Lotus Bud Vase
photos courtesy of ponypainter
Lotus Bud Vase. As noted in other parts of this guide, Indian vases tend to appear in one of two forms -- as hour-glass shaped Goa vases or as bulbous vases. This vase rests on a thicker pedestal than bulbous and Goa-style vases shown in this Parts 2 and 4 of this guide. The vase is 5 3/4" tall. It is decorated with rows of leaf-like designs around the neck and flower designs around the middle section. A repeated pattern resembling the tips of lotus petals edges the bottom rim of the vase. The color is pale marigold, and the vase is unmarked. This vase is referenced on p. 177 of the Standard Encyclopedia of Carnival Glass, 11th ed. This vase closely resembles another Indian vase that appears under the name Kedvesh Vase on p. 165 of the same source: the two vases are so nearly identical, in fact, that we are puzzled as to why the SECG has assigned them two different names
A "Plain Jain" vase
photo by ponypainter
Plain Jain. The 5 3/4" marigold vase shown above is a previously undocumented Indian carnival piece also found by E-Bayer ponypainter, which she has christened "Plain Jain". This vase does not possess either the bulbous form or hourglass Goa shape typical of Indian vases, but instead has an elongated top section and a shortened middle section. The vase features a simple pattern of two stacked rings at the center and three just above the base. The piece is a medium marigold and unmarked. A similar pattern is sometimes found on Indian carnival tumble-ups (night sets consisting of a jug and tumbler).
Paneled Fish Palms and Drapery Rose: Referenced in the Standard Encyclopedia of Carnival Glass, at pp. 204 and 85 respectively, these unusual vases are worth mentioning here, although no photos of the pieces are available. The Paneled Fish Palms vase has a reverse hour-glass shape and is decorated with a stylized fish on a background of feathers and bubbles. The vase is four-sided and framed by ribs. It stands 5 1/2" tall and is found in marigold. The maker is unknown. Drapery Rose vases are similar in shape to the unidentified frosted etched vase shown above, but Drapery Rose vases have longer necks and a squatter bodies. The vases feature a fold-like pattern reminiscient of cloth drapery. They stand 6 1/2" tall.
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To continue to another part of this guide, click one of the links below:
2. Goa-style Vases
3. Hand & Animal Vases
4. Bulbous (Tear-shaped) Vases
5. Etched and Other Vases
6. Cobalt-blue Fish Vase Fakes
7. New Pitcher Patterns
8. New Tumbler Patterns: A
9. New Tumbler Patterns: B
11. Rare and notable Jain pitchers, with tumblers
12. Other Indian carnival glass finds (in progress)
Many thanks to E-Bayers bottleman, bug54, oxbeetle and ponypainter, for generously contributing photographs to this part of our guide. Rights to all photos belong to the photographers, and pictures should not be used without their permission. Text and drawings are (c) 2008 curculiosglass, all rights reserved. To locate any E-Bayer whose name is mentioned here, or to visit his or her store, simply click on "SITE MAP" on the bottom of your screen, and then click on "Feedback Forum" on the right to corner of the screen that next appears. Type or copy the E-Bayer's name into the search blank. To see our other guides on glass, click on GUIDE INDEX. If you found this guide helpful, please leave feedback by clicking the button below. This makes the guide rise in the E-Bay index so that it is easier for other E-Bayers to locate.