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.
Saturday, May 30, 2015
I have always enjoyed these pulled-spout designs by Husted and I know they must have been a challenge to execute. On the left is the Blenko #5921 and on the right is a Blenko #5823. Both of these are in Blenko's distinctive Tangerine.
Thursday, May 28, 2015
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Sunday, May 24, 2015
I want to introduce you to a Blenko Employee and Her ( yes HER) work. We ask her to send a brief bio and some photos of her work to share with you.
Thank you for your interest in my pieces - I'm honored.
I was born in Huntington but grew up in Vicksburg, Mississippi. As a little girl, I can still remember the magical, yet calming effect of sunlight pouring through the stained glass windows at our church. So for as long as I can remember, I've been facinated with color and glass.
At seventeen, I moved back to Huntington to attend Marshall University. In the photography lab at Marshall, I spent many hours in the darkroom experimenting with exposure and contrast to distinguish my photographs from the other students. Five of these prints were chosen during my freshman year to be displayed at the Huntington Museum of Art.
I've always enjoyed creating objects with my hands - whether it is designing original needlepoint canvases to reflect my choices in color, pattern and texture to constructing elaborate murals and stained glass mobiles.
Nearly two years ago I began working at Blenko as the quality control inspector. I was immediately drawn to the challenge of transforming molten glass into pieces of usable and decorative items with the same basic tools that were used thousands of years ago. Working at Blenko Glass has given me the opportunity to hone this skill and pursue my passion of creating unique and colorful pieces of art glass. For over 120 years Blenko Glass has rightfully earned the respect and admiration of glass lovers throughout the world and I'm proud to be a part of this small company that provides an invaluable contribution to West Virginian culture.
I will send photographs of some of my favorite pieces, but if you would like a certain picture, please let me know.
Once again, thank you.
Brenda Ellis' paper weights and other objects of art are available for purchase.
Happy Shopping! Remember when you purchase Blenko Glass. Each items is handcrafted for you by the talented men and women working under the dynamic Randy Rider with the goal of making quality one of a kind items for You.
Buy Made in USA when possible.
Friday, May 22, 2015
If you have interest please send email with your area of interest to
We are also seeking a volunteer with computer / IT skills to assist with the backload of email. If you have this set of skills and four or five hours you
can donate each month please contact us at the above address.
Thursday, May 21, 2015
If so we now have information on 80 - 85 that are for sale
and several ( 10) others.
Also Tammy Fowler from Trophy Antiques in Charleston
has the 81 and three other Birthday Vases.
Let us know what you need to complete your collection and we'll add to our list and notify you when a collector is selling.
IF your WV Birthday Vase collection is complete please allow us to record your name and state to our list of folks who own - Birthday Vase Complete Set.
We continue to have issues with 'blogger' hopefully this will be corrected in the next few days.
Sunday, May 03, 2015
Hillery, we know you adore Wayne Husted as do we - saw this post and thought it would be appropriate for blog readers.
Happy to help.
Baugh ’53 decanter selected for Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum collection 4/23/15 A Blenko Glass Co. decanter and stopper, whose concept, design, and execution are attributed to Betty Baugh, AU Class of 1953, was selected for a Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum collection this past winter. The Cooper-Hewitt, which was renovated and reopened in December 2014, is the only museum in the nation devoted exclusively to historic and contemporary design. Housed in the former residence of Andrew Carnegie, the museum has undergone a transformative renovation over the past three years to restore its historic splendor and create 60 percent more gallery space in which to present 210,000-piece collection and showcase major design exhibitions. The museum opened to the public on Dec. 12, 2014 with 10 inaugural exhibitions and new visitor experiences featuring breakthrough technologies. The Cooper-Hewitt website notes: “The Blenko Glass Company represents the combination of technological advances in glassmaking with original designs noted for their focus on color, a key element of the glassware’s impact….The company earned national recognition, especially for the creation of a strong ruby red glass that could be double fired. Red, a notoriously fugitive color in glass, was generally unstable could not be fired a second time. Blenko’s glass could be double fired without loss of color, which enabled enamel decorators to paint on it. William Blenko, the company’s founder, patented the formula in 1924, ensuring its popularity with enamellers. “The subsequent decision to launch a glass tableware line meant this color entered a field previously reserved for ceramics….. Although the work of the company’s first designers achieved much critical acclaim, the designers were largely uncredited until Blenko hired company’s first design director, Winslow Anderson, in 1947. The role of design director was progressive for its time, as it was unusual to have a full time in-house position providing overall design direction to a firm’s output. Subsequent design directors, Wayne Husted, Joel Philip Myers, and John Nickerson, were all involved in the Studio Glass movement, as innovators or practitioners …. “The technical achievements of this decanter design, developed under Husted’s design direction, are ones of color and form. The tangerine-to-yellow effect results from the part of the heat-reactive glass going back into the fire to create the tangerine color while the part kept away from the fire remains yellow. “The form comes from the glass being blown between two pieces of ornate crown molding, creating a flat form shaped by the negative of the molding. The tangerine and double color pieces became some of Blenko’s best sellers produced during Husted’s time, even though he may have preferred his designs with uniform color. This decanter’s striking colors, combined with its undulating narrow form and irregular surface, shows a sense of the budding Studio Glass movement. “According to Husted, his ex-wife, Betty Baugh, was responsible for the concept, design, and execution of the decanter. Baugh, who trained as an industrial designer, produced glass designs for companies such as Anchor Hocking and Libbey. This is her only design for Blenko …. “ The decanter and stopper are dated 1956 and listed at the Cooper-Hewitt as Design # 566, glass - See more at: http://www.alfred.edu/pressreleases/viewrelease.cfm?ID=11325#sthash.87Zu4cVp.dpuf
Google search found the following about Betty Baugh.
Betty Baugh Design is an industrial design consultancy based in San Francisco, CA credited with developing award-winning product designs in glassware, metal, ceramics, housewares, foodservice, decorative accessories home products and architectural interiors. Headed by Betty Baugh FIDSA, she brings new design methodology in form development, tooling molds/patterns and prototypes to her work for clients including Nambe L.L.C., Gibson Overseas, Inc. Rogaska Slatina Glass, Focus Electrics, Libbey Glass, Anchor Hocking Glass, Lancaster Glass, Colony Glass, Owens Corning Fiberglass, Black & Decker, Progressive International, Villeroy & Boch, William Sonoma and Microsoft. Her glass architectural applications include concepts for USG Interiors and installations in the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank and Comerica Bank in San Jose, CA.
Betty received her degrees from the NY State College of Industrial Design at Alfred University and Stephens College. She has served as an Industrial Design Instructor at California College of the Arts, (CCA), San Francisco Academy of Arts and guest Industrial Design lecturer at San Francisco State University, San Jose State University, Pasadena Art Center, Arizona State University and the University of Kansas. As a guest lecturer, she conducted a Housewares Workshop at LG Electronics in Seoul, Korea was a guest speaker at the International Design Forum at Dongguan in the Guangdong Province, China, and the ICSID design Forum, in Santiago, Chile.
Betty Baugh’s leadership role as an independent design consultant has included all aspects of product design while also serving as a leader in the design community. Betty was recognized internationally by being elected President of the Industrial Designers Society of America. She also represented the IDSA membership as a delegate to the ICSID (International council of Societies of Industrial Design) conferences in Seoul, Korea, Sidney, Australia, and Toronto, Canada.
Her work has received awards from the Toledo Museum, The Tacoma Washington Museum, was nominated for a product design award at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, The Northwest Industrial Design Invitational and has been
|Decanter at Afred University|