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Glass and Pottery Sellers’ Association - September 2008, Volume 45

Wearing Your Favorite Art Glass

by covhouseteex Diane

While strapping on a rare Tiffany glass bowl would be a most interesting fashion choice, there is a more conventional way to personally display your interest in art glass – by wearing jewelry that incorporates art glass beads! These small treasures are commonly referred to as “lampwork” or “lamp-worked” glass. The term “lamp” came from the oil lamps that were used in 17th century France and Italy to heat the glass. Today, glass artists use small torches to melt rods of glass to a molten, taffy-like consistency which is then wrapped around a steel rod called a mandrel. As the glass maker turns the mandrel, the molten glass winds around the rod forming a bead. Click on any photo in this article to see a full size photo.

A good description of how art glass beads are made is available on this website: and a short video illustrating the process can be found on Ďyoutube.comí here: A longer two-part video can be viewed here: and here:

The large range of colors and types of glass available to studio artists, and many different techniques, allow glass artists an infinite range of possibilities. From small, round beads used as accent beads in jewelry to large focal beads or pendants in realistic or organic shapes, from shiny to matte surface finishes, from delicately detailed designs in subtle colors to bold designs in glowing colors, there is something to tempt every glass collector. And for those collectors whose cabinets are nearly bursting with large pieces, these exquisite beads can be displayed in a small space! Some are as small as 1/4”, and larger beads can be 1-1/2” or more. Some artists use these techniques for creating small sculptural pieces that are simply meant as art pieces to display. The International Society of Glass Beadmakers currently has a traveling exhibit of non-wearable lampwork by its members. You can see a sampling of the exhibit here:

There are a few points to look for when purchasing these small treasures. Look for artistsí statements of handcraftsmanship, as there are some cheap imports on the market that are made with inferior glass and techniques. Many artists use the designation “SRA,” or self-representing artist, when they sell on-line. Glass beads should be annealed, a process that cools the molten glass very slowly giving the glass strength. Lampwork artists sometime use technical terms in describing their pieces, such as borosilicate glass, frit, dichroic, etc. While you can often find a good description online, you should also feel free to ask the artist about their materials and techniques before you buy.

To become familiar with the wide variety of lampwork beads available, you can start by searching for handmade lampwork beads on,, or using a search engine like Google to find individual artistsí websites. Many areas of the country have bead shows where you can meet the artists and see their artwork in person. You may also find examples in bead shops that promote local artistsí work. Fine craft shows and festivals often feature lampwork artists or jewelry artists that use lampwork in their designs. Beads of Glass: The Art and the Artists by Cindy Jenkins is a book Iíd recommend to see a wide variety of styles and techniques.

The lampwork beads photographed here are ones Iíve been collecting over the last 5 years. Many will ultimately be made into bead jewelry, but until then, Iím quite happy to just keep these miniature masterpieces on display. Good things do come in small packages!

Click on any photo in this article to see a full size photo. To go back and forth between photos, click on the right or left of each full-size photo.

Jeff Welsh Dragon Jennifer_Geldard-Matte Focal44mm John_Winter-Focal53mm John_Winter-Focal55mm Shani_Keith-Blown_Focal50mm Tom_Galbraith-Blown_Focal40mm Kim_Fields-Floral40mm Kim_Fields-Shell38mm Jeff_Barber-Focal39mm Jeff_Barber-Focal40mm_withAccents Karen_Ovington-Matte_enameled_with_disk_beads Tracey_Waddey-Matte_Bicone_with_Accent_Set Ginger_Sanders-Iridescent_Freeform70mm Carol_Fonda_Monty_Clark-Dichroic_Freeform80mm Lori_Robbins-Twisted_Focal75mm Bobby_Pedersen-Focal40mm Maximillian_Art_Glass-Focal_Set-18mmx11mm Marcia_Parker-Focal_with_Aventurine_Dots24mmx16mm Nancy_Meisner-Small_Focal_Set14mmx9mm Elizabeth_Johnston-Embedded_Florals_Set15mmx13mm Nancy_Meisner-Gold_Fumed_Set15mmx10mm Lynn_Reed-Metallic_Finish_Accents12mmx9mm Bette_Corneliuson-Small_Borosilicate_Accents14mmx8mmShannon_Hill-Blown_Borosilicate_Focal42mmSandra_Saylor_Seaman-Focal_Enamel-Decorated45mm Margaret_Zinser-Biologicals_Series_Focal32mm Ginger_Sanders-Freeform_Leaf_Pendant-50mm Scott_Bouwens-Metallic_Finish_Focal65mm Scott_Bouwens-Focal52mm Scott_Bouwens-Focal_Set20mmx17mm Scott_Bouwens-Silvered_Square_Focals16-24mmLong Scott_Bouwens-Turtle_Bead35mm Unknown_Artist-Fish_Sculpture64mm

PLEASE NOTE: These photos can be printed for your own collection files, but are not to be used for any Internet auction listings, websites, or any other commercial purposes. The photos provided for this article are from the personal collection of the author or with permission from the owner.

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Featured Sellers

Recently featured GPSA sellers are: July - cranberrymanor and August - roxannesebastian. We encourage you to click on their seller IDs and visit their eBay auctions.


Member’s Pick: Check out this Website!

by BLKGLASS Beverly

Ruby Stain Museum

image courtesy and copyright of T. Aulman The ruby stain museum is devoted to a very small portion of the wonderful world of glass. Within the world of pattern glass is ruby stained glass. Made to look like very expensive color cased and cut glass or flash glass it was affordable and available, just check your Sears & Roebuck catalog from 1900. Click the photo to go to the museum.

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Don’t You Wish You Had One of These?

by wgpaul Bill

Photo Courtesy of lagunapottery
Reissner, Stellmacher & Kessel Amphora Vase

Selling Price: $15,201; Venue: eBay

This beautiful vase was made by the firm of Reissner, Stellmacher & Kessel, the first of the famous Amphora art pottery makers in the Turn-Teplitz region of Bohemia. The firm was established in 1892 and operated under that name until 1905. The vase is marked R St K, Turn-Teplitz, Bohemia. It is also marked Amphora and Made in Austria.

When we contacted the seller of the vase, he told us how he came to own the vase and the background of its sale on eBay. Here is his story.

“I am an 86 year old widower, living alone. My late wife enjoyed going to flea markets, estate sales and antique shows. She usually bought only small things because she said we couldn't afford to buy the expensive items. She bought items that appealed to her with little regard as to whether they were antiques. I remember that she came home from one of those expeditions and said,"I really splurged today," and showed me the vase. She wouldn't tell me what she had paid for it, but I had the idea it was over $100.00. When I put the vase on eBay, there were pages from the Antique Trader in the vase. They were dated 1974. I assume she bought the vase sometime before that and saved the article which dealt with the problem of dating Teplitz. There wasn't much said about value in the article.

During last winter and until June, an adult student whom I had previously sponsored, was living with me and suggested we should list some of her things on eBay. He kept urging me and I finally agreed. We thought the things from the china cabinet would be best on eBay and that included the Tepletz vase. That was when we saw the Antique Trader article, which made us think it might be worth more than most of the other items. Shortly after listing, we received a buy it now offer of $300 and considered taking it. However, we thought maybe the bidder knew something we didn't, so we let the bidding continue.

When the bid had reached $6,300, we got a question from a bidder as to whether all the jewels were intact and he told us there should be six. The vase had only one! Consoling ourselves with the thought that you can't lose what you've never had, we used the eBay system to tell all the bidders of the error and we re-listed. We were disappointed at the slow bidding on the re-listed vase but not surprised. Then we got emails which said in effect, the vase is still worth a lot, hang in there, don't take any early buyouts. It was like we had our own cheering section wanting us to get the best price.

Well, you know what happened. Early on, when I realized how much work and time the student was putting into this, I told him we would share the profits. I'm glad I did, because without his help I would not have been so lucky. I probably would have sold it for a fraction of its value to someone who recognized its worth. And anyway, it's nice to have two happy people!”

Photo courtesy of eBay seller lagunapottery.

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It happens every day! You anticipate receiving an item you won at auction. It arrives, and you open the box to see...pottery shards or slivers of glass!

Have you noticed how some auction photos just seem to scream “BUY ME!” while others are so fuzzy and far away you’re not sure what is being offered?

We share a few practical tips on the entire auction experience, from writing the auction, taking the photos, to packing the item to help you get that item safely to your buyer! Our GPSA website offers a more in-depth look at valuable packing and photo tips. Please visit and have a look around!

New careers for vintage glass and pottery!

Use round ashtrays for bottle coasters. Some ashtrays are so attractive but useless in a lot of homes. Use them under a wine bottle or a pop bottle or a juice bottle. They save your table linens from stains and condensation. They also make an elegant presentation.

A set of vintage glass plates in the six- to eight-inch range extend your dinnerware set. Use as a salad plate or an underplate for a first course. Use them for dessert — perfect for a slice of cake or pastry. You may want clear glass plates for use with a busy china pattern. Use a complementary color to enhance your table setting.

If you don't serve champagne often, put those champagne glasses to use for appetizers like shrimp cocktail or fruit cocktail. You can make Jello, ice cream or pudding into an elegant dessert if you serve it in a champagne glass.

Tea pots with missing lids make attractive planters. Fill with live plants or silk greenery and give them a showcase spot in your kitchen or dining area.

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No reserve clearance sales, less than TWO DOLLARS!

GPSA sellers are still listing clearance items. All items start at an opening bid of $1.99 or less. Don’t miss this opportunity to pick up a bargain from one of our reliable GPSA sellers! All sellers abide by the GPSA guidelines found on our home page.

Find a bargain! Deals and Steals!

To see Shazaam listings at any time, click here. Check back often — sellers add items all the time!


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Welcome New Members

We’re so happy to have you join us!!

The following eBay sellers became GPSA members in May and June. As members of the GPSA, they have committed to upholding the standards of the Glass & Pottery Sellers’ Association.

  • yesterdaysglass1976
Welcome New Members

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