Collecting Hints & Tips
Although quite thin, Chance glass is tough but susceptible
like any other glass to chips and scratching, so only pristine
glass is really worth collecting, apart from the real rarities.
Much of the Fiestaware range also has gilt edging that
is particularly prone to rubbing and wear, while the transfer
itself can suffer
from scratching and wear marks. So although finding this glass
in immaculate condition is not too common, some can still be
obtained in the
box and with the stickers still intact, signifying the item was
probably just used for display purposes.
Of the commonly-known patterns, Swirl
is desirable and popular
as a true 1960s
retro pattern, it is also fairly common so
only the more unuusal shapes will command a
better price. Calypto is also
regularly listed on eBay.
The most sought-after
probably 'Night Sky' although other patterns
should never be disregarded: Greco, particularly
Blue, is extremely elegant and the coloured
Lace patterns are often very hard to find.
do you call a Carafe?
all the types of glass, there is no
doubt the aptly named 'Giraffe' Carafe is
very popular and always in demand. Printed
in just four designs (known to date), there
appear to be two different shapes; one tapers
straight down to the base in a cone shape,
the other (far rarer) version
tapers out before angling back to the
base, giving it a slight belly.
Right: a rare 'Giraffe'
Carafe with the vine leaf pattern derived from
Hellenic. Photo courtesy SHCT
(Lady) Margaret Casson (Night
Sky & Green Leaves) was married to Sir
Hugh Casson and also created ‘Cannes’ and ‘Riviera’ designs
for Midwinter pottery.
Harris worked at Chance in a freelance
capacity during the summer of 1959,
producing many designs although
it is unknown how many
were actually used (Calypto & Anemone
are known as commissioned work).
In 1962 he took a tutoring post
with the RCA until 1968, before
leaving to form Mdina glass (Malta,
1968-72), then Isle of Wight Glass
(1972-94). See GlassyEye.com for
later of Whitefriars fame, designed many
'intaglio' dishes in 1953 for his degree
show at the Royal
College of Art and used ruby- and blue-flashed
blanks manufactured by Chance.
Chance made complete lighthouse assemblies and had a whole division of the company
devoted to lighthouses and optical glass. Other famous
buildings that featured
Chance glass are:
- Big Ben (clock faces)
- Houses of Parliament
- Crystal Palace (1851)
- White House (USA)
During the 19th Century, Chance was also
well-known for their exquisite stained
that featured in many prominent buildings.
For more on the technological side of glass,
datasheets can be downloaded from Pilkington's