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Chance Expressions - David P Encill

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David E:
If anyone is interested, I have taken some example snapshots of the book, to give you an idea of the final appearance:

Front Cover
Chapter 1: History page
Chapter 2: Pressed Glass - one page from Britannia
Chapter 3: Fiestaware cross-reference
Chapter 4: Fiestaware Patterns - Lace
Chapter 6: Handkerchief vases
Chapter 7: 1950s Design Philosophy

The pages are 210mm x 297mm, so there is a lot of detail! Chapter 5 covers related Fiestaware topics, in case you were wondering.

David E:
Chance Expressions: The History of Domestic Glassware from Chance Brothers

David P. Encill

Publisher: Cortex Design
Published date: December 2007
ISBN-13: 978-0-9549196-1-0

Price: £17.99

More information from:

Available direct from the publisher (, Broadfield House, Smethwick Heritage Centre, various online sources.

Description: 148 pages, A4 size (210 x 297mm) softback, full-colour, about 750 photographs.

Proposed: A free online service to purchasers whereby updates, additions and amendments can be downloaded and printed, to supplement the book.

Summary: Apart from the history of the glassware, a brief history of the company is included along with a fully illustrated colour catalogue of all known glassware produced by Chance Brothers (and W.E. Chance) for the domestic market. A proposed second volume covering the history and the technologies employed by the company.

Book Description/Overview:
The company of Chance Brothers made an impact on Victorian England that can never be underestimated.

Originally starting as a manufacturer of ordinary window glass, Chance Brothers became the developer of the world’s most advanced lighthouses, pushing back boundaries to bring unparalleled safety to the world’s shipping lanes.

The advances in optical equipment were also unsurpassed and the company developed many new techniques that greatly improved the process of glass production.

During the 20th century, the company went on to create some of the world’s most iconic domestic glassware with designs that, even today, are considered modern.

This volume, the first of two, details the history and technologies of Chance Brothers from 1824 to 1981 and includes a complete collectors’ catalogue for the entire production of domestic glassware.

Enter pressed-glass patterns like Orlak, Spiderweb, Britannia, and Fiestware patterns such as Swirl, Calypto, Anemone, Psychedelic. Many other amazing patterns from some of the foremost designers of the 20th century, including Robert Goodden, Margaret Casson and Michael Harris.

Reviews of the above book are here:,19525.0.html

David E:
Two completely free downloads are now available from

1. Chance Expressions, pages 86–87
This is to (hopefully) make people aware of my findings regarding the Swirl pattern. There have been many incorrect assumptions regarding the designer's name and until a positive identification is available, it is wrong to attribute either Margaret Casson or Robert Goodden as the designer. The book does actually contain lots more data on Swirl, including a short biography on Robert Barrington, the first Fiesta General Manager, who could be the real designer, but this assumption is only based on his involvement with many other of Chance's designs. 3.54MB in size, full 300dpi print quality.

2. Chance Expressions, Errata & Updates
A full A4 sheet listing the few errata and some pertinent updates. 300KB in size, full 300dpi print quality.

I hope this helps.

David E:
Chance Expressions has been reprinted and is now the 2nd Edition.


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