For the discerning collector of glass art, or for anyone who truly loves beautiful things, the perfect gift to give him or her would be an exquisite vase made from lead crystal glass. A genuine lead crystal vase of fine quality and craftsmanship is really one of a kind and something a lover of glass art would appreciate tremendously.
While the art of making fine glass for crystal vases has been in existence for two thousand years, it is only during the 17th century that the concept of putting lead oxide into the glass has been invented. The invention is credited to the English glassmaker George Ravenscroft. The inclusion of lead oxide in the glass made the glass material heavier but more durable. The glass can be cut into complex and intricate patterns without fracturing or breaking. More importantly, the lead oxide content of the glass increased the clarity of the glass so that the glass surface shines more brightly when hit by light.
The beauty of the lead crystal glass vase, however, does not come without a price. The manufacture of lead crystal glass consumes great amounts of time and involves a process that is more intricate than that of creating the usual crystal glass. Even with today’s advanced technology in making glass, making lead crystal glass vases still takes a lot of work and effort. Therefore, it is to be expected that mass-produced lead crystal glass vases generally do not have elaborate designs and are sometimes even slightly duller than a piece made by an individual glass maker who is not affiliated with any manufacturing or glass cutting house.
A piece of lead crystal glass vase made by an individual glass artisan, one can expect this piece to be custom-made and one of a kind. It is not easy to duplicate designs on a lead crystal glass vase stroke for stroke, so one can safely surmise that no two pieces in a set are truly alike. Even the slight differences in what is supposedly a matched set of glass vases can lend charm to every piece. Truly, a lead crystal glass vase is a must-have for a discerning collector of fine glass art.