Archive for the ‘glass/goblet’ Category

“Stippled Medallion” glass spooner, c.1865

Sunday, April 28th, 2019

I purchased this humble flint EAPG (Early American Pattern Glass) spooner in the Stippled Medallion pattern many years ago while visiting Mark’s aunt and uncle in Framingham, Massachusetts. It was made by Union Glass Company in Somerville, Massachusetts, just 20 miles northeast of Framingham, between 1860 and 1870. It measures 5.5 inches high, and has a diameter of 3.5 inches. After its original base snapped off, a simple turned wood base was made (most likely at home) and the spooner was returned to the dining table and put back to use.

I spotted it at an antiques shop, sitting on a shelf among other “perfect” glassware, with a faded price tag of around $10. I assume it had been gathering dust on that shelf for many years, watching as dozens of nearby pieces came and went, feeling as an orphan must feel seeing others taken away to start a new life. It’s a good thing I found it and added it to my collection, or else it might still be sitting on that shelf, anxiously eying each customer and hoping “maybe this is the one…”

This example still has its original base and shows what mine looked like before the crash.

Photo courtesy of eBay

Engraved goblet with Mining Scenes, c.1690

Thursday, January 31st, 2019

This superbly engraved blown wine glass was made in Nuremberg, Germany, c.1680-1700. It stands 10.5 inches high. The large bowl features finely engraved scenes of open-pit mining and a large coat of arms, believed to belong to one of the Counts of Mansfeld. The delicate stem is made up of a series of hollow knobs and rings and amazingly, has remained intact after knocking around for over 330 years. 

The foot was not so lucky. As would be expected of a large, fragile glass object such as this, the original glass foot broke off hundreds of years ago, and was fitted with an elegant hand hammered silver replacement. It is engraved with the name “Mansfeld”, the date “1530”, and in a tiny font “A.E. 12”. As Mansfeld, Germany was the center of silver mining for over 800 years, this magnificent goblet was most likely made by one of the Mansfeld families as a commemorative piece. 

As with almost everything from my collection, we will never know for sure how the piece broke, who repaired it, and what happened to it after it was reborn. I’m just glad that so many of them ended up in my collection and that I can share them with you.

This goblet from the same period shows what the original glass base on mine might have looked like.

Photo courtesy of Scottish Antiques

Make-Don’t, Fake-Do, or the real deal?

Sunday, November 25th, 2018

Every so often I find a piece that stumps me, stopping me dead in my tracks. This is one such example.

I purchased this 6.5 inch high robin’s egg blue satin glass goblet at an antiques shop in Southern Vermont where I have found other interesting antiques with inventive repairs. At first glance, I believed it to have an at-home wood replacement base repair, similar to dozens of others I own. Upon closer inspection, I am not so sure.

Although I have a few examples of finely turned wood bases, this one seems too slick and intentional to be a replacement. The glass itself is in perfect condition, with no indication of its base having been snapped off.


After a bit of research, I believe the goblet to be a reproduction of French Portieux Vallerysthal glass, c.1900. Why it has a wood base is a mystery, but if anyone has any information, I would love to hear from you.

These goblets have their original bases.

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Photo courtesy of eBay

Pressed glass goblet with wood base, c.1860

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017

This EAPG (Early American Pattern Glass) goblet in the Honeycomb pattern was made in America during the Industrial Revolution between 1850 and 1870. It stands 3.25 inches high.

After the base snapped off, it was repaired at home with a primitive wood replacement. A quick and easy, yet inelegant, fix. Please take a look at two other similar pieces, Honeycomb pattern goblet and EAPG glass goblet, each with different shaped wood replacement bases. I would like to attend, or perhaps host, a dinner party with mismatched wine goblets such as these, and being able to use the jumper rentals in Phoenix (https://jumpersnrentals.com/phoenix/) would complete my dream. And if things get rowdy, I may have to do a bit of re-repairing of my own.

This goblet with base intact shows what my goblet might have looked like before it became undone.

Photo courtesy of Brey Antiques

Champagne coupe with wood base, c.1850

Saturday, January 2nd, 2016

This hand blown glass champagne coupe with fluted stem was made around 1850, possibly in America. It measures 5-1/2 inches high.

I imagine during an exuberant New Year’s Eve toast, well over 100 years ago, the base snapped off. Rather than toss out the broken glass, a replacement base was made. A simple, nicely turned wood replacement base was attached to the remaining stem and the champagne was poured once again.

Happy New Year to my friends and followers of Past Imperfect: The Art of Inventive Repair!

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Honeycomb pattern goblet, c.1860

Saturday, February 28th, 2015

I don’t like to use the term “make-do” to describe antiques with inventive repairs, as I feel it diminishes the artistry and integrity of the piece. But this EAPG (Early American Pattern Glass) 5-1/2″ tall goblet in the Honeycomb pattern is a make-do in the best sense of the word, a fine example of Yankee ingenuity. Made in America between 1850-1870 during the Industrial Revolution, machine-made pressed glass examples such as this were mass produced and available to all.

Though more affordable than hand blown glass counterparts, this goblet was still cherished enough by its owner to be repaired after it broke. In this case, after the base snapped off, a simple unpainted and overscaled wooden base was attached to what was left of the broken stem. The result is a bit comical, as we are left with a short, stout goblet with an extra wide wood base that resembles half of a yo-yo.

This example with its original base shows what my goblet looked like before it took a tumble.

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Photo courtesy of eBay

“Cat Tails & Fern” pattern goblet, c.1880

Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

This EAPG (Early American Pattern Glass) goblet was made between 1880 and 1890 in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia by Richards & Hartley Flint Glass Co. EAPG, strictly an American invention, was manufactured throughout the US during the Victorian period, from 1850 to 1910. It is estimated that there are upward of 3,000 different patterns, although closer to 1,000 patterns were most commonly used. This goblet, in the Cat Tails & Fern pattern, measures 6″ high and has a visible 3-mold mark.

After the base snapped off, I am assuming sometime in the early 1900s, an itinerate mender or perhaps the original owner attached a 6-sided brass sleeve to hold the two broken pieces back together. This subtle yet effective quick-fix repair did the trick to make the drinking vessel function again. I like the addition of the tiny red gummed label on the bottom with a cryptic “9999” written in cursive ink, the meaning known only to the original scribe.

This goblet with the same pattern is one of 1,100 donated to the Shelburne Museum in Shelburne, Vermont, by Dr. Elizabeth Garrison in 1987.

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Pair of early blown glass wine goblets, c.1790

Saturday, May 26th, 2012

This unusual pair of American blown glass wine goblets date to the late 1700s and stand approx. 4″ tall. I love finding pairs of early repaired items and these are no exception. When the bases snapped off at the stems, a turned wood base was made for each as a practical replacement.

Free-blown glass goblet, c.1790

Tuesday, November 8th, 2011

This free-blown conical shaped wine glass with gadrooned bowl stands 4-1/2″ tall. I believe it to be of European origin and made in the late 1700s.

I especially like the lozenge shaped glass bubble “imperfection” on the side, which looks like a microscopic organism.

A crafty tinsmith transformed this goblet in to a tumbler, after the stem and foot snapped off sometime during its early life.

A “witches hat” style tin replacement foot with concave bottom measures 3″ in diameter.

This unaltered goblet with the same design still maintains its original double knob stem.

Photo courtesy of eBay

Blown & cut glass goblet, c.1870

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

A simple design of vertical panels and horizontal stripes graces this elegant hand blown cut glass goblet, which measures 5-1/2″ tall and has a diameter of 3-5/8″. I believe this to be an American example from the mid to late 1800’s

The tin “witch’s hat” base replaces the long gone original glass foot and stem. As goblets were used on a daily basis by most family members, many became broken and were repaired both at home and by itinerant menders. I have numerous glass goblets in my collection with replaced wood & metal bases in a variety of unusual forms. Please enter “glass goblet” in the SEARCH box to the right to see more examples