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A guide to Chance glassware
all text & images ©


Two books were currently planned for the 'Chance' series, but due to the influx of extra data on the domestic glassware, this prompted a supplemental volume called Chance Additions.

Links: Chance Additions | Chance Expressions | Chance Reflections

Also see below two new books on glass-related topics, just released:

A History of Glassmaking in London: and its Development on the Thames South Bank
by David C Watts
Publisher: Watts Publishing

A new book, just launched in May 2009, which charts the history of glassmaking in London. A very detailed book with hundreds of photos and illustrations.

Lighthouses: The Race to Illuminate the World
by Toby Chance and Peter Williams
Publisher: New Holland Publishers

A new book, which explores the efforts by Chance Brothers from 1851 to produce lighthouse parts that were eventually found all around the world. Using technologies pioneered by James Timmins Chance, this optical glass became world-renowned.

Visit Toby Chance's web site


Chance Additions

A new book, which is a supplement to Chance Expressions, and not a replacement.

  • Actual photographs of patterns, previously unseen, including some which may have only been used for trial periods
  • Labels from the pressed glass ranges
  • Examples of Spiderweb variations, including the lids and knops
  • More examples of the rare Cato design
  • The complete catalogue of Aqualux, including a previously unknown hors d'oeuvres set
  • Coloured Swirl examples!
  • Photographs of the entire Balloons pictorial series
  • Visit Kenneth Townsend web siteTen different design of Green Leaves
  • All the variations of the Cut Pearl design
  • An example of the Koala design!
  • All the Shakespeare designs by Kenneth Townsend. Also see the official Kenneth Townsend web site
  • Many more unusual Novelty and Commemorative trays
  • The ruby-flashed and the larger Swirl handkerchief vases, both of which predate the Milk range

This is just a small representation of what is available.

Chance Additions - book cover

122 pages with over 650 photographs and images - over five per page.

Chance Expressions

A guide to the domestic glassware
produced by Chance Brothers

From a collectors point of view there is very little to help with the identification, dating, valuation and relative rarity of domestic glassware produced by Chance Brothers, apart from this web site.

But there are many misleading comments and statements that simpy propogate rumours and incorrect identification for some of the patterns – all these are addressed in Chance Expressions. Available soon.

Chance Expressions:
The History of Domestic Glassware from Chance Brothers
Including a catalogue and reference guide for any collector
ISBN-13: 978-0-9549196-1-0

Buy Now from Cortex Design
(available the week starting 10th December 2007)

Many important findings that will help answer the following questions:

  • Spiderweb Celery Vase
    A truly iconic design

    What exactly is 'Aqualux'?
  • Is your rare Swirl dish really Swirl?
  • Who designed Swirl? Probably not who you think!
  • Who designed the superb Psychedelic pattern?
  • Handkerchief Vases: how many colours/patterns?
  • Which rare patterns are not listed on this site???
  • How much did Britannia cost in 1950?

Included is a chapter précising the history of Chance Brothers — Volume 2 (Chance Reflections, due out in 2008) deals with this in depth, along with the various technologies developed by the company.

Also included is a chapter detailing Chance's involvement with the media and the influence of 1950s design, through the various manufacturers, organisations and exhibitions.

Contents: Chance Expressions

  • Foreword by Charles Hajdamach
  • Introduction
  • 1. A Short History of Chance Brothers
  • 2. Pressed Glass, 1929-1953
  • 3. Slumped Glass: Fiestaware Cross-Reference
  • 4. Slumped Glass: Fiestaware Patterns 1951-81
  • 5. Fiestaware: Related Issues
  • 6. Handkerchief Vases and Posy Bowls, 1956-81
  • 7. 1950s Design Philosophy and the Media
  • Appendices

We are honoured to include a foreword by Charles Hajdamach, a widely respected glass historian, researcher and author:

British Glass, 1800-1914
British Glass, 1900-2000 (due 2008)
Frederick Carder and Steuben Glass: American Classics (co-author)


Mechanical Data

  • Full-colour printing, 'perfect' bound, silk laminated 350gsm soft cover
  • Size: A4 (210 x 297mm)
  • SIze/Type: 148 pp on quality 150gsm silk paper
  • Provisional price: just £17.99 (€27 through Europe, $35 US)
  • Printed and Published in the UK

For more details, please contact us.

Provisional: All information is liable to change


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