Glass Discussion & Research. No ID requests here please. > Germany

Another Carnival Glass Question...

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Hi KevH,

Many old glass patterns were being made in clear glass versions before they were ever done in Carnival Glass. Your piece might pre-date Carnival Glass.


I do have all the answers to these questions - and I have written about them extensively in the past. Apologies for not having written sooner but I have been deeply occupied on a difficult pressing family issue. I'll try and give you the full answer to this as soon as possible.

Thank you Glen, there's absolutely no hurry about it. Families are far more important than glass any day. Hope it all works out OK for you.  :)

Anne, thanks for your understanding words - I appreciate them.

Now I'll try and answer your question  :)

Anne, your bowl is Curved Star (exterior) with Headdress (interior). It was made by Brockwitz, the German glass manufacturer, circa the late 1920s - 1930s. It is possibly one of the more easily found items of Brockwitz glass in the UK (don't misunderstand's not "common" is just one of the most popular Brockwitz items that can be found).

You have several questions incorporated within your main query. May I deal first with the Curved Star pattern, and which maker(s) made it? The great majority of Curved Star items were made by Brockwitz. In fact almost all of them. They made a huge range of shapes in the pattern - from massive epergnes and vases, to tiny little dishes. Two Carnival colors were made - blue and marigold - as well as clear glass, and red and blue uniridised. Brockwitz called the pattern "Zurich".

Curved Star was also made in just a VERY few shapes by Eda Glasbruks (Sweden), and also by Karhula (Finland). Such items are very scarce indeed - and are almost never found outside their country of origin. On the other hand, the Brockwitz Curved Star pieces can be found all over the globe (with a great amount in the UK).

Now let's tackle the Headdress issue. This pattern was probably made first by the United States Glass combine (U S Glass). It was used on their Cosmos and Cane items as an interior pattern. It was probably copied by Brockwitz. Plagiarism was rife at that time. Lots of companies copied designs. I could write (and have done) reams and reams on this issue alone.

There is no documentary evidence in the form of catalogue proof, to show that Brockwitz made the Headdress pattern. The evidence is circumstantial - it appears as an interior design on items with the Curved Star pattern that are shown in Brockwitz catalogues. It also appears coupled with two further patterns, one of which is a (known) Brockwitz pattern.

So, the evidence shows that Headdress when used with Curved Star was made by Brockwitz. But Anne has another problem - she says that the pattern on her bowl looks like the one that Dave Doty shows as being the U S Glass example.

I think the reason for this, Anne, is simply that Dave’s photo of the one on the right of his pic (ie the one with the Curved Star exterior) simply doesn’t show the pattern very well, as the highly reflective nature of the iridescence is distorting the details. I have studied many examples of Headdress (and many examples of Curved Star) - some years ago I made a series of drawings showing the very small differences between the variants of the design. I feel it is actually rather difficult, on a cursory glance, to tell the difference between the US Glass and the Brockwitz versions.

On all versions of Headdress, there is a repeated pattern of four plumes, around a central motif. The differences can be found if you study the patterns in detail (eg. the position of the curling tendrils, and the stamens on the central petals).

Do please ask Dave Doty for more information on this detailed observation if you find my explanation to be lacking.

Finally, Kev asks how many other carnival patterns are known in clear glass. Well, quite a few European ones were. Most Brockwitz patterns were quite possibly also made in clear glass. I certainly have seen a number of them - ditto for Riihimaki, Eda and Sowerby (eg #2266). I have not made a study of it, however, only observed in passing.

Hope this helps a little.

Note: Information above is my IP (copyright. G. Thistlewood. 2005)

Hi Glen, Thank you so much for your explanation... it helps a great deal.

I've been back to David's pictures and zoomed into them to see if I can tell the patterns apart better, and as you rightly said it is difficult to see the Brockwitz one clearly - the shape of the bowl makes the pattern vague around the edges of the feathery bits - it loses the ends of the loops on them so makes it look like there are 8 feathers not 4 loops.

But, having now looked closer at the centres of the feathery bits I can see there are differences and that the centres of the feathery bits on my bowl are indeed the same as the Brockwitz one on David's site. So, the mystery is solved and I do have have the right inside with the outside. :D

Now I can tell Mum tomorrow that what she's getting is pretty certainly a Brockwitz marigold Carnival bowl with a curved star outside and a headdress inside. Now I need to find that camera and take pictures for the gallery before she takes it home with her!!!

Thanks again for your help Glen, I do appreciate your information, and know Mum will do so also.  :)


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