How To Collect Cameo Glass

Cameo glass is, by any standard, exquisite. It is considered as a glass art. However, making a cameo glass entails a lot of hard work and ingenuity.

First, layers of wonderfully colored glasses are fused together. Then, the layers are either meticulously etched or carved. The designs are usually opaque figures while the motifs are also appropriately set against a colored background, often stunningly dark. The technique involved in creating a cameo glass was first seen in 30 B.C. It was essential an ancient Roman art form. Although the technique had already dramatically evolved over the centuries, cameo glass remained highly sought after until today.

Here are some of guidelines in making your cameo glass collection impeccable:

Be familiar with the specific technique used in producing the cameo glass. Needless to say, pieces carved using tools would be valued higher. The exhaustive effort invested in producing them would definitely mark their worth. Meanwhile, more modern pieces were either etched using acid or created with sandblasting.

Know the “more” valuable items. Collectors run after the pieces made by prominent cameo glass artists, brothers George and Thomas Woodall. For about 30 years, they were employed by Thomas Webb&Sons, a reputable British glass corporation during their heydays. The creations done by the Woodalls were considered unique and unprecedented. Each piece utilized as much as seven layers. Each layer is a distinct type of glass. Although some collectors are happy to own even just one of the mass-produced Webb cameo glasses, some are willing to pay a handsome amount for a signed piece by the Woodalls.

Collectors also adore the collective works of Frenchmen Emile Galle and Antonin Daum. They were the well-known cameo glass artists during the 19th century. Their earlier, more singled out pieces were created out of clear glasses. They were colored with enamel and accented with either traditional or patriotic emblems of Nancy, France. The more valuable pieces are the ones signed by Galle. However, those pieces marked by a star next to name are pricey too. Those pieces were done to commemorate his tenth death anniversary in 1904. In case of Daum, his signed works with the cross of Lorraine are considered rare finds.

Learn how to spot a fake. Luxurious art glass pieces are hot items. Simply put, their forgeries abound. Most notably, a lot of Galle’s and Daum’s works were copied. Fortunately, the originals are incomparable. For instance, the fake ones would never be able to imitate the free form in the original works. The design details are also seemingly lacking in flair. Say, you want to check a piece done by Galle. Focus on his favorite motifs – flowers and landscapes. If you look closely, you would notice that the foliage, even the flower petals, are admired for their sophisticated detailing.

Join online groups of cameo glass enthusiasts to learn more about the hobby. Also, be prepared to properly store and safeguard your pieces. In fact, their value alone should give you enough reason to plan where to keep them.


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