The Heisey Museum

After the flea market, Alan and I went to the Heisey museum where I had a much greater appreciation for what I was looking at because of what Karen had taught me. I also think that it helped all of the new information sink in. Seeing everything with the labels in the museum let me check my new knowledge and I have to say I did pretty well naming the pieces before reading the labels – I felt like quite the Heisey expert, lol! My new favorite pattern is Saturn in Zircon, especially the handled pieces. I loved the U shaped candleholders and the three piece all glass cocktail shakers were pretty fantastic also, even the strainer is glass.

If you are ever near Newark you should certainly make an effort to visit the Heisey Museum for an impressive collection of glass in all of the different colors and patterns. So beautiful!

Learning about the colors was wonderful – I just don’t think you can really learn the colors from a book, seeing them in person is so much better and Karen of course gave me tons of information about them and also the new colors issued by Imperial. Then all of that information was reinforced at the museum and the show. Hawthorne is a lovely purple and Alexandrite is a very unusual color which is described as lavender but will look blue under a florescent light and pink in daylight, it seemed to me that the color changed depending on the angle. I noticed a broken Marigold creamer in one case which I thought was very odd ( and somewhat careless of the museum) but it was an example of how the Heisey Marigold may degrade. Due to an unstable formula it can crack, turn opaque or even shatter! To see a description of all the colors click here http://www.heiseymuseum.com/colors.html

The museum also has a history of the company including samples of molds and photos of the glass making process. The creation of Heisey pieces was quite complex with each item passing through a number of skilled hands before it was finished. An outstanding example of the skills of the cutters is a case of glass with cuttings by Emil and Willibald Krall, expert glass cutters and former engravers to the household of the Emperor of Austria before joining Heisey in 1933. The intricate details of their wheel cut pieces are absolutely amazing.

For more information including company history, Heisey colors and Heisey etchings, please visit the museum website at http://www.heiseymuseum.org/index.html

Next – The Glass Show


My Adventure in Heiseyland - Annual HCA Convention

On June 17 - 20 2009, The 38th Annual HCA Convention was held in Newark, Ohio. HCA stands for Heisey Collectors of America and Heisey lovers from across the country make the annual pilgrimage to Newark, which they fondly referred to as Heiseyville, for the four-day event.

My adventure started when my DH Alan told me about a large auction of Heisey glass he had seen in the paper and agreed to go with me to Newark despite the fact that he has only the most casual interest in glass. Whoo-hoo, road trip! Now I must digress for a minute to tell you how I met my friend James. I had listed a creamer with Quilted Diamond and Wampum in the title and stated in the listing that it was a quilted diamond pattern similar to Wampum. James being a vigilant Heisey lover took issue with my description and went on to carefully and kindly explain the difference between Heisey’s Quilted Diamond and Wampum patterns and to point out that mine was neither. Although I only meant to point out the similarity between my piece and the Heisey designs, I conceded that the listing could be misleading and changed it. Out of this first encounter grew an online friendship with this very nice gentleman and long time Heisey collector.

Being excited about the auction I wrote to James to tell him about my upcoming trip only to discover that he and his wife Bobbie were going to be in Newark for the Convention! I decided that my time would be better spent on Saturday when there was a flea market and glass show. The Flea Market on the Square opened at 8:00 but since I can’t drag my lazy patootie out of bed early enough to get to Newark by eight James and I arranged to meet at 9:30. My sweet husband drove and I slept for the 45-minute drive to Newark. Of course, as soon as I arrived at the flea market I was wide-awake and ready to look at some Heisey! It’s always exciting for me to see some glass that I’ve only seen photographs of before and there it was… tables and tables of glass sparkling in the sunshine.

Almost before I had a chance to start looking my phone rang and it was James, I looked around and saw a tall distinguished looking gentleman talking into his cell phone and since his lips were moving in synch with what I was hearing I determined it was James. After a short meet and greet chat his lovely daughter Karen arrived. Here is the tall and slender HCA V.P.

Karen is the newly elected Vice-President of Heisey Collectors of America and an extremely knowledgeable Heisey collector. She graciously spent over 2 hours giving me the “educational tour” at the flea market teaching me things that I would never have known without her. This is me with the white legs - I need to get outside once in awhile!

I learned where to look for markings, to look for the bumps on Plantation, Heisey colors, common fakes, rare pieces, common pieces, and much more that I’m sure is stored away in my head somewhere. A dealer shows us his wares.

This was just the beginning of my Heisey adventure – coming up next – the Heisey Museum.