Heart of Glass - Blenko Glass

Blenko Glass is a West Virginia treasure that spans generations. Nothing symbolizes the state of West Virginia better or more beautifully than Blenko Glass. We will discuss current and former craftsmen and designers and how important it is that Blenko and West Virginia glass be appreciated and valued by the younger generation.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Blenko Cat Decanter

This amazing figural design is clearly one of designer Wayne Husted's most innovative moments. This rare cat shaped decanter with removable head stopper was part of a series of three iterations of the form, including a small decanter and vase form (pictured as a group below). Whereas the smaller version is called the "kitty" decanter in the original catalog, this dignified Siamese sentinel is the "cat" decanter, out of deference to its imposing scale.

This version of the three variations of the design is by far the rarest, having been made for only one year (compared to two for the others) and due to the fact that clearly fewer must have been made - no doubt the very high price in the original 1955 retail catalog explains this. It is also the most impressive.

Clearly the form is a decorative sculpture and not intended to be functional, as is often incorrectly assumed due to the handle-like tail. However the protruding tail that wraps gracefully around the side of the body from bottom to top either regularly suffered from annealing problems during fabrication (different types of glass cool at different speeds, thus resulting in stress between the two) or was just misused. Based on the regularity of occurrence I would assume the former. Regardless the reason, the result is the same; the majority of these cats have fractures within the top tail joint, as does this one.

Very rare Cat decanter designed by Wayne Husted in 1955 and made for 1 year only, #5510L in Charcoal, 16.75in.H x 5.5in.D

*Description and photo from Glasshouse Check out this webstore for the best quality and most unique selection of BLENKO and Vintage Glass.


Anonymous said...

Glasshouse is located where? I need to visit this place.
Also I do not like the new layout. There is no photo of the person who did the blog, also its difficult to operate. I am older and like simple. I read my Huntington news from the site daily. I use to subscribe for years, but it came in the mail 2-4 days later. I wouldn't mind paying for the online, but having it so the photo of the blog is there helps me know where I am going.
Margie Hale

Phani said...

I love this Glass-work. Color is just awesome. As I asked before, I would like someone to come-up with 'dog' design or is there one?

Hillary J Homburg said...

I sent your comment about the need for a DOG to Blenko Glass - when I get a response I'll post it.
Lot of Us are Dog Lovers.
Thank you for commenting and for reading the blog.

Phani said...

My Pleasure.

Phani said...

I had to come back and look at these pictures of Decanter's. They are lovely. I am fond of gray-scale color tone, and this would be one of my fav. pictures.

Anonymous said...

How much? Great gifts for 'cat lovers'.
Info more info
and thanks to Glass house for gifting you this info and photos.

lewisdvmphd said...

What is the price of these?
Does he have them now?
Didn't appear so from the website.

sweetdoc said...

If anyone reading has these cats and wants to sell them or has any of the early birthday pieces
or the 2007 2008 birthday piece I need them.
thank you

Anonymous said...

11.75 cat decanter emerald #5510 group mint condition blenko glass for sell to right person the best price. Roudebush family e mail roudebush.mark@yahoo.com