Caithness Glass

Caithness Glass
Caithness glassfrom the Glass

Caithness paperweight
One of the many abstract
designs produced by
Caithness Glass as
unlimited editions. This
one is "Desert Spring"
by Alistair MacIntosh.

Angela's new book
on Pirelli Glass
has a chapter on
Vasart paperweights
and the link between
Vasart & Pirelli.

Worth taking a look

Caithness Glass: A short explanation:

Caithness is the most northerly and remote county in Scotland. Wick, on the North East coast, was the original home of Caithness Glass, which started as a small glassworks in 1961 making vases and bowls for the tourist trade. Today the company has major glass-making and visitor operations in Perth, Oban, Wick, and Kings Lynn, and they are part of the Royal Doulton group of companies.

Two years after the company was formed, Paul Ysart - already a world renowned paperweight maker, was recruited as training officer to teach local people how to make glass. He was very secretive about his paperweight techniques, and taught them to a few selected people. The company at that time did not make paperweights, and Paul and his apprentices Peter Holmes and Willie Manson, made them after work and at the weekends.

In 1968 the late Colin Terris joined the company with the responsibility of setting up an engraving and design studio. He was initiated into the mysteries of paperweight making by Paul, and soon developed his own ideas for completely different designs. In 1969 he designed the "Planets" set of four abstract paperweights, which happily coincided with the first landing on the moon. The limited edition of 500 sets were soon sold out, and the following year Colin designed and successfully marketed three more paperweight designs.

Colin Terris and Caithness Glass developed the concept of production lines for abstract paperweights. At the time, abstract paperweights were being made in Scandinavia and some US studios. But they were one-off creations of colors and bubbles. Colin required that each design had to be reproduced over and over again - 500 times in the case of his Planets set, for example. This innovation made a major contribution to the success of Caithness Glass.

Caithness grew into a major operation making paperweights, jewelry, clocks, vases, bowls, scent bottles, and many other items in high quality crystal and coloured glass. In their heyday, the 1990s, they had two huge visitor centres where glass-making could be observed, displays admired and treasured glass items purchased. Their paperweights are recognised world-wide as collectors' items. But unfortunately after a series of mergers and takeovers Caithness Glass had been reduced by 2008 to a small team with just five staff (all glassworkers) renting a portion of the Crieff Visitor Centre.

If you are looking for Caithness glass, you can usually find items on ebay
click to see the Caithness Glass on offer just now

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References and Sources:
Click on the underlined text or the book cover below to see more about these books.

Caithness glass book Scottish  paperweights book 1999 British Glass Book 2 GB Paperweights book 2007 Caithness Glass by Hill 2011 The Caithness Collection 1981 World Paperweights book 2001 Brackel Paperweights book 2000 Perthshire paperweights 1997 All About Paperweights book 1992 Paperweight Signature Canes book 1997 The Glass Menagerie book 1997 Pirelli Glass Book 2016 Encyclopedia of Caithness Paperweights, Nowson 2011 20th Century glass book

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It is always interesting to see what Caithness glass there is on eBay. Take a look often to be sure you don't miss something. Click Caithness Glass

The first part of a Trilogy on three London Lampworkers covers Pirelli, Bimini, and Komaromy. If you are interested in Pirelli glass you are sure to enjoy this one. It is available as a paperback book or as a downloadable Kindle.

INFORMATION about the Pirelli-Vasart Link!
Angela's new book on Pirelli Glass has a whole chapter on the links between Pirelli Glass and the Ysart family, in particular with Vasart glass. Pirelli formed a partnership with Vasart and used their paperweights in all kinds of items from door handles to automatic cork-screws. Whilst Paul Ysart was working at Caithness his brother Vincent was collaborating with Pirelli.

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