Learn about Carnival Glass

Carnival Glass is pressed glass that has been iridised. The glass is firstly pressed into a mould while molten, and being in liquid form, takes on the shape of the mould. After it has been removed from the mould, it is sprayed with a coating of liquid metallic salts. This gives the surface an iridescent lustre, similar to the effect of oil floating water.

Although the technique was known in Roman times, it was not until 1907 that it was revived by Louis Comfort Tiffany. Other manufacturers taking note of their success followed suit and were able to produce a cheaper product by spraying the mixture on the glass, instead of including it in the glass mixture as Tiffany was doing.

Carnival glass was at its peak of popularity from about 1908 to the 1920's and as its popularity declined manufacturers, were left large stocks they were unable to sell. Popular legend has it that it was sold cheaply to travelling showman for prizes at carnivals, from whence came the name by which it is know today, carnival glass.

Prior to this, it went under a variety of names, including Iridill, Imperial Jewels, Imperial Art Glass, taffeta, lustre glass, Aurora and rhodium. more...
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Amethyst Carnival glass master bowl, 'Piping Shrike', 24 cm diameter

Amethyst Carnival glass master bowl, 'Piping Shrike', 24 cm diameter

Amethyst Carnival glass master bowl, 'Ruffled Kangaroo', RO4696, 24 cm diameter

Amethyst Carnival glass master bowl, 'Ruffled Kangaroo', RO4696, 24 cm diameter

White/ice Carnival glass two piece bowl on stand, 18 cm high (including stand), 29 cm diameter

Amethyst Carnival glass bowl, 'Lotus and Dragon', 20 cm diameter

Marigold Memphis Carnival glass punch bowl, with fifteen cups, punchbowl stands 25 cm high, 30 cm diameter

Blue Carnival glass bowl, 'Horse Heads', 13 cm diameter

Northwood blue Carnival glass lidded butter dish, 'Peacocks at the Fountain', 14 cm high (including lid)

Amethyst Carnival glass bowl, 'Three Fruits', 23 cm diameter

Amethyst Carnival glass footed fruit bowl, 'Christmas Bells', 15 cm high, 22 cm diameter

Amethyst Carnival glass master bowl, 'Magpie', 24 cm diameter

Amethyst carnival glass kookaburra dish, diameter 13 cm

Two marigold carnival glass swan bowls, early 20th century, 23.5 cm and 13.5 cm diameter

A Carnival glass bowl, height 8 cm, diameter 23 cm

A Carnival glass dish & vase [2], height 11 cm Dia. 18.5 cm + H 6 cm Dia. 14 cm

Carnival glass, cobalt 'Kangaroo' bowl, 24 cm diameter

Carnival glass, colbalt 'Kookaburra and Waratah' fruit bowl, 25.5 cm diameter

Carnival glass, three cobalt dishes, Magpie, Kangaroo, and Kingfisher, 13 cm - 14 cm diameter

Carnival glass, colbalt 'Kookaburra and Waratah' fruit bowl, 28 cm diameter

Northwood stippled rays amethyst carnival glass master bowl

Marigold carnival glass bowl and 6 cups, D29 cm approx (bowl

Two Marigold carnival glass peacock bowls, both D23 cm approx

Two Marigold carnival glass grape and leaf bowls, D23 cm approx

Two Marigold carnival glass bowls, D23.5 cm approx (largest)

Marigold carnival glass kookaburra bowl, D24 cm approx

Pair of tri footed carnival glass bowls, with berry and leaf decoration, D20 cm approx

Two Carnival orange glass bowls, one with 'kookaburra' design and the other of an all over daisy design. Diameter 24 cm and 23.5 cm

A Carnival glass purple 'Magpie' bowl. 25.5 cm x 9 cm

A Carnival glass purple 'kookaburra' bowl, impressed Rd 4184 to front. 13xm x 4.5 cm

Marigold Carnival glass kangaroo pair of master bowls having frilled edging, raised foliate detail & a central kangaroo medallion. RD4696, made by Australian crystal glass Company circa 1924. Condition: good, minor wear to the bases. Diameter 24 cm

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