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Author Topic: Alum Bay / Isle of Wight - label and logo  (Read 4890 times)

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Offline KevinH

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Alum Bay / Isle of Wight - label and logo
« on: April 02, 2005, 04:50:28 PM »
In an earlier 3-page message ("Help to id a paperweight please" - Sun Mar 06, 2005) a mystery weight was eventually identified as Alum Bay Glass, Isle of Wight.

Having originally baffled me (I had not known before of the "AB" impressed logo on any paperweights) I now find myself with two weights given as gift yesterday. One is Alum Bay Glass and the other Isle of Wight Studio Glass. Both have a paper label in addition to an impressed logo. So it seemed appropriate to include some details here.

I have no information of when my two gifted weights were made, but under UV light they do not indicate lead glass. For the Alum Bay weight this shows that it is not an "earlier" piece since information linked in the original message (see above) tells us that the company (at some stage) ceased using lead oxide as part of the batch.

Here's the two together:

This is the "Flame" logo and label to the base of the Isle of Wight piece:

And these two links show, for the Alum Bay item, a) the label and b) the logo - after peeling back the label:
And an image of the logo highlighted for easier viewing:

The Alum Bay label shows the Needles Lighthouse against the last couple of a series of very thin and pointed rocks at the western end of the Isle of Wight

For the Alum Bay "AB" logo, it would appear that the definition may not be very good in many cases. In the photo shown here the letters are set to the side of the circular area causing the "B" part to be quite indistinct from many viewing angles. Also, if you see the letters as embossed (raised), that is an optical illusion - they are actually impressed, with three raised nodules, one for the upper centre of the "A" and two for the inner parts of the "B". (The Isle of Wight "flame" logo is raised.)

Clearly the "swirled" design of these items is quite typical of many different studio pieces from the 1970s to the present time. Indeed, many people may think "Mdina" when first sighting a paperweight like these, as that company seems to be more widely recognised for its "swirl-type" designs.

My own view of the Isle of Wight and Alum Bay paperweights of the type shown is that they are standard gift items and as such do not (yet) receive recognition within paperweight collector clubs. The two shown here both have unintentional air bubbles included - with the Alum Bay example having an unfortunately large bubble to one side.

Perhaps the general art glass from those companies does have a wider recognition?

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Offline chopin-liszt

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Alum Bay / Isle of Wight - label and logo
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2005, 10:13:27 PM »
:D Hi KevH, Yes, the general art glass from these companies does have greater recognition, Isle of Wight Studio Glass in particular. It has it's own website at . I have an Alum Bay jack-in-the pulpit vase which I acquired about 3-4 years ago, not knowing what it was, but it had a "Mdina"-ish feel to it, and I wanted to investigate. It does not have the AB logo. Since then , I have come to be able to recognise Alum Bay, but it is only recently I've encountered the AB logo. I feel it is newish. I think the labels have changed a bit over the last few years too. Both firms came into being in the early '70's. Chris Lucas was a glassblower at Alum Bay, early on, and he trained with IOWSG, for a year or so, before going to AB. (I think I put this bit in the last thread which you mentioned). IOWSG was started by Michael Harris in 1971-2, after he left Malta, having started Mdina there, in 1968 (not 1963 as stated in the Glass Museum bit - I think there must have been a misprint somewhere) having left the RCA in London in 1967, when Sam Herman took over. Cheers, Sue.
Cheers, Sue (M)

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