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A personal collection and
observations on Art Glass

Reference Books

The following publications is just a representation of the dozens of books that are available.

The problem with finding good books is that they can commonly list esoteric items that are either one-off Studio Glass, museum pieces, or exceedingly rare, often making the material a little pointless for the average collector. The following books are therefore far more representative of what the amateur collector would really want to read and study!

Price Guides
Many of the Miller's and Dorling Kindersley Guides shown here include prices on objects and originate from actual selling prices at auctions. However, it is inadvisable to use these strictly; prices and trends fluctuate from one year to another and prices on eBay can be significantly lower.

Scotland's GlassScotland's Glass: 400 Years of Glassmaking

Available from Cortex Design

Chance Expressions

The History of Domestic Glassware from Chance Brothers - see

Miller's Guides

Amongst the many Miller's titles, the following are very popular and very useful pocket guides. As with all guides, it is important to treat the prices quoted with caution: these are obtained from actual sales through auction houses, but are not necessarily representative to items sold, for example, on eBay.

Glass Fact File A-Z

Ivo Haanstra
Comprehensive encyclopedic pocket guide of virtually every glass maker known! Many glass terms, signatures and labels are also covered. Although understandably brief with any description, this is an essential book for any aspiring 'glassies' armoury.

For specific periods, the following slim books offer some excellent, though concise, reference. Included are hints, tips for buying, labels and marks and a glossary of terms.

Popular Glass of the 19th & 20th Cent.

Raymond Notley
Collectors of antique glass will find this book covers a wide range of items.

Glass of the '20s and '30s

Frankie Liebe
For Art Deco glass this slim pocket guide covers popular glass in this period.

Glass of the '50s and '60s

Nigel Benson
An excellent concise book detailing common glass covering this specific period.

Glass: Antiques Checklist

Mark West
Does tend to cover the higher-end of glass collecting, but includes a lot of information that equally pertains to all aspects of antique glass. The identification guide is one important feature.

DK Collectables Price Guide

Judith Miller
Covers all collecting areas, but does include a large section on glass alone.

Note: colour photos in this Dorling Kingersley version make it a more attractive proposition than the Miller's version (below)

Miller's Collectables Price Guide

Madeleine Marsh
Similar to the above, but does include many black & white photos, making it less desirable.

Miller's Glass Buyer's Guide

Jeanette Hayhurst
Covers each topic and type of glass collecting so is easy to find the specific area you require. Naturally, does not cover each topic in great depth, but the items listed are relevant collectables. Some topics are probably a little neglected and a pity many of photos are black & white...

20th Century Factory Glass

Lesley Jackson
Coffee table style book, but contains a quite comprehensive study of the major glassmakers, with splendid photographs of more commonly found pieces. All major European and US makers can be found here with photographed examples and histories.

Even covers less-known makers like Chance and makers of glassware with household names like Corning, Ravenhead, Pyrex and Anchor Hocking (US). Essential.

20th Century Glass

Judith Miller
Not to be confused with the above title, but as resourceful with a large number of quality photographs. Covers the more popular makers with a large section detailing contemporary makers, such as Dale Chihuly.

Sotheby's Concise Encyclopedia

Edited by David Battie, Simon Cottle
Crams a lot of information into a fair sized book. Deals with the history and origins of glass from around the world, dating back to when glass was first produced in pre-Roman times.

Specific Collecting Areas

Detailing individual makes, or specific collecting areas like Animals or Carnival Glass.

Bagley Glass

Angela Bowey, Derek & Betty Parsons
Dedicated to this prolific English maker. Includes an excellent potted history of the company and very detailed information on the entire(?) range of glass production, An invaluable source of information on pattern names, numbering and a good cross-referenced index by type and name. The only down-side is the presentation and layout that does let the book down slightly and as such is rather pricey.

Go to for this title
Carnival Glass: The Magic & The Mystery

Glen & Stephen Thistlewood
Authors of several excellent volumes detailing the various aspects of this massive subject.

Animals in Glass: A Murano Bestiary

Edited by Marina Barovier & Attila Dorigato
Rather esoteric, but this book does give a nice historical spread from the Murano artisans and the techniques used – often this can be a pointer when evaluating other glass items. But while you'll probably not find anything from here at a car-boot sale: you never know...!

One problem with this book is the price. For a softback you should find this considerably cheaper on eBay.

Glass Animals & Figurines

Debbie & Randy Coe
To be purchased — advise to follow.

Italian Glass : Murano–Milan, 1930-1970

Helmut Ricke & Eva Schmitt
Shows an incredible range of top-end Italian glass – interesting, though not necessarily achievable – but does demonstrate the various techniques and processes used to create particular effects. Also includes an interesting section on Italian glass making history with photographic appendices on signatures and techniques.

Go to PostScript Books for this title
Scandinavian Glass 1930-2000

Leslie Pina
Smoke & Ice and Fire & Water are two popular books dealing with Scandinavian glass.

Scandinavia Ceramics & Glass

Jennifer Opie
To be purchased — advise to follow.

Sowerby (CD ROM)

Glan & Stephen Thistlewood
Extensive catalogues, including reprints from the original Sowerby publications, and supplied in three volumes covering:

  • Vol 1: Victoria to George V
  • Vol 2: George V to Elizabeth II
  • Vol 3: Sowerby's Glass from Victoria to Elizabeth II
Go to for these titles
Whitefriars Glass

Edited by Lesley Jackson
Contains a good history of the company with dozens of archive photographs and literature. Also draws on the influence of overseas glassmakers, particularly Scandinavian.

The main reference portion of the book deals with exhibitions held in Manchester (1996) and London (1997), but there is a good spread of Whitefriars glass included and an extremely useful guide.


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