As a tribute to dogs and the role they play in family life, we’ve introduced a new glass dog each year and for 2021 our latest creation is Derby. This new silhouette features the classic characteristics of a smaller breed dog inspired by pugs, bulldogs, and boxers.
The steps we went through to create Derby, started with renderings to explore variations and interpretations that can ultimately be made out of glass. From the hand renderings we pick a path to then sculpt in clay to establish a few three dimensional models. As the models emerge, we pick out the best features and elements to finalize into one ideal model.
Once we make a metal mold from the clay model, we can start forming Derby with some trials on the glass blowing floor. The glass blowers can make adjustments with tools while the glass is hot, and use a torch to smooth out the surfaces. We evaluate the first round of samples and make any other edits to the details, to get the final result we are after.
Derby follows the same design and development path we took with our existing line of pets including the iconic dog, the puppy, and a puppy ornament. These beloved animals are a striking reminder in glass of our essential connection to the natural world. Following our tradition of using local names from the countryside, Derby takes it’s name after a wonderful Northern Vermont town.
Please visit our Website or stores to explore these great gifts for any dog lover, to have as a keepsake, a paper weight, or a decor tribute to a favorite pet.
End the week, with a refreshing drink we serve at our restaurant in the Simon Pearce mill located in idyllic Vermont. If you are inspired to kick off a happy hour and want to try the Negroni Sbagliato recipe at home we provide that in this post. The Vintner Flute is a beautiful glass with a new contemporary profile that isn’t as narrow or tall as traditional flutes which makes it perfect for light cocktails and anything sparkling. The refined elegance is a result of our master glassblowers pulling the stem from a fluid gather of glass.
Negroni Sbagliato Recipe
1 oz. Campari
1 oz. Cinzano Sweet Vermouth
Add Campari and Cinzano to a Vintner Flute glass with light ice. Top with prosecco. Small orange garnish.
Visiting our website to browse the full range of stemware options or visit any of our stores.
Looking back on 2020, we had the pleasure of working with a group of design students from Pratt Institute to interpret our brand and design intent through their eyes.
The collaboration started with conversations with Constantin Boym the chair of the Industrial Design department at Pratt, about how we could continue to build on the relationship between the two organizations. We wanted to focus on exploring the growing connection between product design and the handmade. The next step to getting this started was to partner with Dana D’Amico the professor of the special projects class, to create a design brief. Looking through the lens of the Simon Pearce ethos, the students would investigate form and function that would be appealing to a younger demographic.
Research started before the pandemic early in 2020, and we were able to have the Pratt class leave Brooklyn and make the trip up to Vermont and visit our facilities to learn first hand about our processes for making glass and ceramics.
We gave the students a tour and introduction to the brand at our flagship Mill location, and then visited many of the facilities of our Windsor location for an in depth explanation of how we make things. Matt McFarland and Neil Cockwill gave insights into our unique processes, and requirements to make an object into something we can produce. This input is crucial for students to understand in order to resolve a design concept so it can be made by master glassblowers or potters. Over the many months that followed, we transitioned the classroom to working virtually online with video conferencing.
The students had to quickly adapting to working from home, and were extremely resourceful with continuing to experiment with concepts off campus. As we did our virtual review of the class progress, the students revealed many very poetic refections on the natural landscape and rituals of use. This exploration lead to some very creative vessel concepts for glass and ceramics that they could see incorporating into their lives.
“These students really worked hard through a challenging semester and were very excited to share their work”, a quote from Dana. The concepts were refined into a final presentation that would be reviewed by a panel of judges.
In addition to Dana and myself, we were fortunate to have an amazing panel formed from New York museums. We were joined by Yao-Fen You, Senior Curator + Head of Product Design and Decorative Arts at the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, and Elizabeth St. George, Curator at the Brooklyn Museum. With the virtual final review, each student gave a concise overview of their semester work. After much consideration, the panel selected the work of Stephanie Chen for her nicely resolved reference to ice formations at the Mill in connection with the rise in whiskey+bourbon drinking.
Stephanie’s study of the waterfall influenced the tactile experience of the glass in the hand, and considering amber drinks like whiskey all played into how this concept came together.
We were delighted to see all the students hard work pushed through these very thoughtful concepts and look forward to future collaborations. We love to explore concepts for the home and build relationships with students. To further delve into exploring this potential we provide internships over the summer months so students can be engaged with all elements of creating and developing new products.
While homebound for Winter Solstice you can enjoy shorter days, and longer nights mixing unique drinks in our handmade glasses. The Benson martini glass was created to inspire and enhance the experience of drinking cocktails from a unique barware vessel. The shape takes it’s cues from an appreciation for the proportioning of geometric elements. We feature this glass at our restaurant in combination with the Vermont Ginger Cosmo cocktail found on our menu. The glass makes a great gift for anyone on your list who would like to mix this wonderful cosmo at home.
Add all ingredients to an ice filled shaker and shake well. Strain into a chilledBenson Martini glass. Garnish with a piece of candied ginger on the rim.
The design evolved from a few drawings that explored the combination of the sphere and cone shape. We then perfected the proportions working with the glassblowers to create a beautifully balanced glass.
You can taste autumn in a glass with the Hog Toddy recipe. If your ready for happy hour, or coming in from a trail hike, this warming drink is simply spiced hot cider with a splash of rye whiskey. Perfect for chilly days, mixing the richness of fresh apples, with rye whiskey from the Vermont maker Whistle Pig. The amber color of the drink is best experienced in an ideal glass like the Windsor Tankard or Ascutney Mug.
Fall has arrived in Vermont. The season is in full swing for pumpkin picking while enjoying the colors of the leaves that are rapidly changing, and foraging at the local farmer’s markets. With swift Autumnal transition, the Maple leaves are particularly colorful this year and we all yearn for some change in scenery. At Simon Pearce, we are very busy creating the handcrafted glass favorites of the season like our varieties of pumpkins,acorns and other beautiful handcrafted objects.
Staying true to our design theme of being inspired by Nature, our artful pumpkins with the curly stems are derived from our quest to capture the nuances of how they truly grow. The classic and iconic simple stem pumpkins returned this Fall with many other new arrivals that will delight anyone that wants to bring some harvest vibe into their home.
We have all spent so much time sheltering at home, that many of us have started to redefine how we live in it. We are rethinking how we utilize the rooms, their function and what we put in them. With the arrival of Fall, we can spend a little time roaming and wandering at shops and markets with the opportunity to search for those ideal artifacts to bring back into our lives. It is about an appreciation of design, fresh seasonal icons and craftsmanship that clearly meet our new psychological needs for repurposing the home.
The appealing character:
The pumpkin designs are a refined combination of structural optic details, curvy shapes and an overall softness that makes you want to pick them up. This results from the hand involved in everything we do to create Pumpkins that are naturally appealing.
The pumpkins make great decor gifts, for those that appreciate the unique characteristics of handmade glass. Come and pick through our latest batch of pumpkins from any of our shops or at our flagship mill. Find the perfect shapes that speak to you.
For the virtual experience, visit our website: Simon Pearce.
At Simon Pearce, we take our design inspiration from Nature with all that New England has to offer, from the rolling terrain to the lakes, rivers and waterfalls. We cherish time outside, a walk in the woods, or time spent at the waterside this time of the year which infuses our design thinking.
As summer sets in and the days blend together, we strive to regain some sense of normalcy and a chance to relax and to recharge. The long days of sunshine offer time to focus on comfort, warmth, and familiarity. We rediscover ways to enjoy sunsets and the evening outdoors while we savour summer drinks or wine out of our favorite glasses. Taking a break allows us to gain the sense of enlightenment that comes from being out in Nature whether by land or sea.
Vintner & Marble
With change in our everyday routines we seek ways to live with a new approach, and try to surround ourselves with beautiful things that give us joy. We’ve been adding to our Vintner wine tasting collection, with the new Coupe and Tulip wine. The Vintner glasses, with their stunning good looks and refined function are an opportunity to upgrade your wine tasting experience. We’ve also added the new material combination of glass and marble to the wine tasting story. The marble forms are inspired by a visit to the recreated atelier of Brancusi at the Pompidou Center in Paris. An artist of the early 20th Century he was known for simplicity, elemental shapes, and a liberal use of material which are ideas that are true to our design approach.
The design process started with small clay sketches, and hand renderings to evolve the aesthetic of the group. The marble items center around wine & cheese serving, with future designs in the queue to round out the concept. The smooth simplicity of the marble designs marry perfectly with the elegant outlines of our Vintner Collection.
The marble is another way for us to bring a new earthy material into the mix of our brand expression. The latest introductions are the Marble Chiller and the Vintner Wine Decanter.
While sheltering at home, the effort to reinvent the home office became paramount for many of us. Looking at the desktop landscape, we quickly realized we needed something to hold our phone or tablet, while video conferencing, and came up with the Woodbury Phone Holder to compliment our other items in the collection. Having the appearance of being sculpted from a block of ice, our proportions are scaled to work with most phones and smaller tablets. The clear solid base is an exceptional design for anyone looking for a crafted technology solution for the office or even the kitchen while following recipes.
The sculptural outcome of finessing a unique form with our talented glassblowers, the Romance Heart Vase is a work of art in glass. It started out as renderings on paper, and then went to interpretation by our master glassblowers, with each one capturing a special moment of expression with the human hand. The versatility of the fluid shape performs perfectly as a vase with summer blooms and also as a decor object that can stand on its own. A great gift for any occasion or for someone special to give a heart to.
An iconic item for this summer entertaining, is the new organic shell platter. The new design takes it’s natural inspiration from ancient fossil spirals revealed in stones of the Isle La Motte, here in Vermont. The concept was translated into a textured shell, starting with hand sculpting the design into plaster and then a metal mold to cast the glass platter. It’s a versatile object with plenty of surface for serving, and a visual delight when sun shines through it.
Inspiration for the Shell
Shell Platter Metal Mold
For the latest summer offerings visit our website and stores.
Our stores are open exhibiting some of the best collections in glass, pottery, and accessories, with a focus on summer seasonal entertaining at home. Shop by appointment, to be immersed in the assortments of beautifully crafted wares to uplift your everyday experience.
With current events impacting us all so deeply, we collectively discover ways within ourselves to embrace the unexpected. We find comfort and positive support through togetherness. We explore a new path forward and enrich our lives while sheltering at home. We find more meaning in gatherings especially around the table whether at home or virtually.
We yearn for a warm cozy atmosphere and strive to cultivate a sense of safety and serenity taking hints from the danish concept of Hygge. Well being is key, while optimism and finding balance in our lives helps uplift us throughout each day. A new normal evolves, and a homebound routine incorporates virtual meetings with colleagues, while the home office becomes a dynamic hub of activity.
We seek interaction and connection with family and friends to compare notes on ways to feel good, be healthy, share recipes and stay nourished. As we navigate these times a new appreciation for the things around us emerges as we curate a sense of what we want in our home environment. While embracing the change we can still celebrate life’s holidays, birthdays, milestones, and make things work for us at home. Entertaining can be a source of joy by sharing botanical drinks, creating craft beer tastings, wine & cheese, or sending invites to a virtual happy hour.
Look for What Speaks to You
Throughout our Simon Pearce line, we have many of the quintessential handmade elements available to make those home moments special. Our drinkware collections contain a fine selection of beautiful and functional items you can use to curate your home. Having the time to pay attention to details, you can appreciate the nuances of the handmade.
At Simon Pearce, we have adapted to the new paradigm and are continuing to practice our craft. Our ethos of ‘handmade quality’ drives us forward and everything we make is a unique expression of humanity.
Puppy on the Glass Floor
The hand is involved in every step of bringing each object to life. We hand draw, and model concepts, like the dog and the new puppy then work out the details on the glass floor with the expertise of our glassblowers. Each object is a combination of the hand of the maker, the form, the fine quality of the material, and that is blended with our distinct ‘point of view’ about design.
Hand Thrown Pottery
These elements cannot be separated. Our passion for handmade excellence permeates everyone in the company with ‘purpose’. We love to share what we create, because we are confident it will make these times spent at home, that much better.
Bristol Red Wine & Decanter
To see the latest items for sheltering at home please visit our website.
If you need a break from cooking in your kitchen, and you are in the Upper Valley, the Simon Pearce Restaurant has a new menu with delightful dishes of ready to heat dinner. Jerod Rockwell is running the kitchen for take out which can be picked up with curbside service.
“We set out to build a glass line with characteristics that are designed for the serious wine taster.” -JM
Last May, Jay Benson, Dana Sabatino, and James Murray ventured on a trip to the California wine country to visit tasting rooms and meet with wine producers we are considering for partnerships. Being inspired, we came back to Vermont and created new stemware to appeal to people serious about wine tasting, and lovers of thin, hand-blown glass that enhances the tasting experience, without having a glass that overtakes the wine, in weight and physicality.
The pulled-stem technique that we use, results in a thinner, more lightweight stem and bowl typical of a classic Sommelier’s glass. The thin stem and base offer functionality and grace.
The line was designed with modern proportions, taking cues from our Bristol red wine glass in form. The glasses are generously scaled to show off the wines within.
There are many options of wine tasting glasses by European makers that are machine made, and have a seam on the stem. The Vintner Collection from Simon Pearce does not have seams because we hand-craft each glass.
The thin bowl of the glass is designed to have a lot of volume, and room for air to circulate with the wine, and yet not be heavy. Ripple lines of our handcrafted process still appear in the bowl of our glass, different from machine made glass by other wine tasting glass companies in the industry. Our bowl shapes are ideal, and relate to how quickly we want the wine to pass into the taster’s mouth, which effects the experience and flavor.
An additional benefit of the thin base, is that it is easy to swirl the wine while holding the foot, during a wine tasting.
The Vintner Collection is sure to please anyone looking for the “whole wine tasting experience”, with the refined balance of the preferred wine in a high quality hand-crafted glass.
As the weather turns warmer, and we look for ways to stay cool, sipping chilled drinks can do the trick. Ice is the usual cooling element, but if you don’t want to water down your drink we propose using frozen soapstone, paired with our handcrafted glass as an optimal way for tasting drinks, particularly bourbon.
With the popularity of our Ludlow collection, we thought the soapstone could take the place of the wood, and once we tested some samples of this new combination we were delighted to find the stone truly chilled the glass. Take it from the freezer, and it can cool your drink in about 8-10 minutes, and conversely, can be used for warming drinks as well.
Throughout New England, soapstone is a common material found on kitchen counter-tops, which are known for their durability, smooth touch, and low porosity. This ancient natural stone, is the result of volcanic geological formations from long ago. It’s most notable properties are that it can stay cold or hot for a long time. The material is very unique for its workable characteristics, and can be sculpted as the Inuit would, and also made it into a variety of functional designs. We named it Alpine after the northern ridges we have here in Vermont and New England.
Experience how this unique stone can chill your drink as it cradles the glass.