Few items add as much elegance and beauty to a room as a piece of crystal or cut glass, especially American brilliant cut glass. The American brilliant period, 1880 to 1905, utilized new technologies to make cut glassware of surpassing beauty. Now that beauty can be yours.What’s the difference between cut glass and crystal?
Crystal is either natural quartz or rock crystal or high quality glass with a high lead content. Cut glass has been decorated through the use of a moving wheel. Glass itself is the product of a silica and an alkali formed into shapes in its molten state.What types of crystal or cut glass are available?
Available types are:
- American brilliant
A variety of items are available, including:
- Tumblers, glasses, and cups
- Serving sets including salt and pepper shakers and condiment pumps
- Jewelry holders
- Powder boxes
- Hurricane lamps
- Candle holders
Much of the crystal and cut glass is clear, but there are beautiful examples of cranberry or ruby glass. Other examples of glassware come in shades of green, yellow, blue, and other colors.What patterns are available in American Brilliant cut glass?
- Stratford: Stratford sports a hexagonal figure where each of the six sides is intersected by a split. The areas in the split are decorated with crosshatching. The pattern was designed by William C. Anderson for the Libbey Glass Company and first appeared at the Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893.
- Strawberry diamond and fan: This pattern has a square diamond, marked on top with an X, with fan scallops at the edges. It was the most popular type of American brilliant cut glass during the American brilliant period.
- Hobstar: The hobstar is found in many brilliant age designs. It’s a star that has so many points that their intersection resembles a hobnail from an old-fashioned boot.
- Prism: A piece with this pattern has two or more miter cut sides that form a bar or a ridge.
- Starburst: Starbursts, like hobstars, can be mixed with other details such as pillars, pinwheels, fan scallops, and rosettes.
- Pinwheels and stars: The pinwheel is also called the buzz. It is a latecomer to the American brilliant period, for it did not arrive until the 20th century. The basic design is a 12-point swirling star with fan motifs that follow the star points.