Stretch Glass Optic Patterns Discussed on November 10, 2016

Note:  Page numbers below refer to this document, which contains many photos of the glass discussed.  The document (PDF) will open in a new window.

Our November 10, 2016 Stretch Out Call on Optic Patterns was most informative. Leading the discussion were Russell and Kitty Umbraco, Cal Hackeman, and Dave Shetlar. Twelve people joined the call. Bob Henkel moderated the call, keeping us moving through the 6 Optic Patterns that were discussed. (There are over 10 different Optic Patterns that were included in the lines of stretch glass produced by several companies.)

Optic Pattern is a term referring to a pattern made in the glass surface that is to be viewed through the other surface of the glass. We learned that the pattern shines through from the opposite side of the glass, usually on the interior.

Curtain Optic was only produced by Fenton and is difficult to find. It is sometimes referred to as “Drapery” and is highly desired by Carnival, Fenton and Stretch collectors. The vase with cobalt handles on Page 2 is made from the same mold as the tankard with the 4-ringed base. Very few are known to exist of the tankard and tumblers. Handles on all these pieces are not iridized and are very fragile. It is recommended not to lift and pour.

We learned that the pattern now called Diamond Optic was originally denoted by a number. Some also call it “Quilted Optic.” Fenton and Northwood produced this pattern. The Fenton Velva Rose goblet in this pattern on Page 3 is scarce. A cup and saucer in Grecian Gold is also difficult to find. Some of the diamonds on Page 4 are shaped like a pyramid. Did you ever wonder how they could possibly get the diamond optic inside the tiny Celeste Blue cologne? It started out as a vase shape!!!  The Topaz candy jar with the top has square diamonds. Page 5 features the Northwood vase, night set pitcher and the covered pitcher. The diamonds were formed on the outside, then heated and pushed to the inside. The Northwood tumblers have the diamonds on the outside.

Rib Optic was produced by Diamond, Fenton, and Northwood. The pink candy jar on Page 6 is Diamond. The Fenton pyramid-shaped candy jar is found in all the usual Fenton colors, but is difficult to find complete with the top in Tangerine. Sometimes it is decorated. The Topaz opalescent pitcher and tumbler with 4-ringed base is scarce, as is its Curtain Optic counterpart. On Page 7, Rib Optic design shines out through Fenton drink sets with both style pitchers and with tumblers in both hour glass and flared shapes, with and without handles. The Northwood purple vase on Page 8 is an unusual color, size and shape. The Northwood Russet 3-footed fern bowl has ribs on the outside and is therefore not considered optic.

Imperial produced most of the Optic Panels (Wide Panels). Examples are the red bowl and base with matching panels on Page 9, the small Iris Ice (crystal) bowl and under plate and the Green Ice (blue-green or teal) sherbet. The Topaz wide-panel plate was made by U.S. Glass, and the blue mug by Northwood.

Optic Rays was also made by Imperial, Northwood and U.S. Glass. The Green Ice plate with narrow rays on Page 10 was made by Imperial in 3 sizes. Green Ice and Iris Ice are the most common colors. It is harder to find in Blue Ice (smoke), and even harder in red-amberina. Imperial’s sherbet is pictured in red-amberina, which is a unique color to Imperial. The Olive Green comport with 4 sets of double rays was made by U.S. Glass. The Northwood Russet footed bowl was made in two separate molds, which made it expensive to produce.

Optic Swirl (Spiral Optic) was produced by Fenton, Imperial and Northwood. Optic Swirl is more difficult to find than Diamond Optic.  The Velva Rose dolphin low bowl on Page 11 is Fenton. The Topaz piece is the foot of a candle holder (hard to tell from the picture).  On Page 12 the Imperial Iris Ice mayonnaise bowl and under plate fit right together. The Rose Ice (marigold) plate belongs under a cheese dish and is hard to find. Some of the handled vases show more stretch than this Grecian, 2-handled, fan in light marigold.  Page 13 pictures more Optic Swirl from Northwood. They made candle holders and vases that match this blue bowl, and made the same pieces in Topaz.