As the holiday entertaining days approach, Simon Pearce designed a variety of new items to enhance good times with family and friends. With the popularity of the recently launched Shoreham whiskey glass; we extend the unique gesture of its curve into a complimentary decanter and double old-fashioned. The decanter’s streamlined silhouette is a statement piece for any bar, and feels great in the hand when pouring and serving for celebratory times this season.
A wonderful new entertaining item is the Hampton chiller. Pursuing design concepts that are both functional and beautiful, we brought together hammered stainless steel and our glass to create a stunning combination. The spherical glass shape can be filled with crushed ice, and the benefit of the 18/10 stainless insert is to keep your wine or champagne bottles chilled without them getting wet sitting in the ice. Separately, the metal component can be used as a tabletop sleeve like a coaster to place a bottle in, while the glass shape can double as an ice bucket or even a vase.
Exploring interesting material combinations is a hallmark of our design pursuits. Expanding on our popular barware category, we brought together a smooth sculpted wood handle with a stainless steel element to create a few quintessential bar tools. As a great gift for the home bar user, we created a grey leather/suede pouch to conveniently put the tool set away when not in use.
As our forest of glass evergreen trees keep growing, we explored other mediums that our unique tree design can be interpreted in. After sculpting our trees as prototypes to be made out of beeswax which were launched last year as tree candles, we then took the same models to cast the trees in our own pottery. Two options of glazes are available of a classic white dove, or the reactive green glaze called moss glen that has interesting tonal detail along its edges. The new pottery evergreens make a great addition to any glass tree forest to create a striking decor statement.
We developed the technique of adding a watery swirl around a glass vessel first on a Waterbury tumbler and then a lamp. To add a touch of expressiveness and swirl to our wine glass collections, we brought this concept into a classic red and white wine glass shape. Each Waterbury glass is entirely unique resulting from a small gather of molten glass added on the glass floor while the vessel is being formed.
Our perfectly imperfect form and edge treatment of the Burlington Hurricane shows off the unique characteristics of our glass. This year, it has been interpreted into two new sizes. The new small and large sizes combined with the medium are great as a grouping in clusters of all three items on a table, console or mantel. Perfect for illuminating a holiday table for gathering.
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.
Enjoy the Fall season with one of our classic cocktails that we serve at the Simon Pearce restaurant in Vermont. Heighten the experience of the Harvest Moon drink with our handcrafted Ascutney Whiskey or Double Old Fashioned glass. This is a great recipe to try at home while observing the seasonal transition, or queuing up a virtual happy hour with family or friends. For the perfect virtual gifting and entertaining solutions, you can find our range of glasses on our website.
Here is the recipe
2 oz. Sauza Conmemorativo
3/4 oz. Lime Juice
1/2 oz Spiced Syrup Mix*
Few Dashes of Angostura Bitters
Add all ingredients to an ice filled shaker and shake well. Pour into an Ascutney DOF or Whiskey glass.
Lime wedge garnish.
*Spiced Simple Syrup:
1 Cups Water
1 Cups Sugar
3 Whole Allspice Berries
3 Whole Cloves
1 large cinnamon stick
1 1-inch Pieces of Ginger, peeled and chopped
Make simple syrup and add all spices. Let steep for one hour and then strain out all the spices to your preference.
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.
We are pleased to be serving our devoted customers and connecting with new ones, in the Philadelphia area with our 11th store bringing us into the region with a fresh new approach. Following on the heels of opening our Chestnut Hill Store, just over a year ago, we completed the interior construction of our new Ardmore store, just in time for the holiday Black Friday shopping rush. To make this go from concept to reality, we had an incredible team that made the opening of the store possible, with staff contributing from every department in the company. Our company is united by a culture that is dedicated to providing a “wow” shopping experience.
Quote from our press release;
“The Ardmore store will invite customers to explore—or perhaps discover for the first time—our glass and pottery collections,” said James Murray, Senior Vice President of Product Development + Design. “The shop’s warm, contemporary interior and displays take a cue from our flagship location in Vermont; by referencing that historic building and vibrant makerspace, we hope to bring the spirit of handcraftsmanship to our newest location.”
Deciding on the best location is key, and Jay Benson, our CEO, researched and evaluated the marketplace to find Ardmore to be an optimal destination.
The design process started with imagining the type of space and feeling that takes cues from the experience of the Mill in Quechee, Vermont. We developed a material selection of complimentary, beautiful, real materials, that include walnut shelves, white oak flooring, wrought steel, walnut fixtures, and clay inspired earthy paint tones, that are used throughout the main retail floor.
Illumination is a key element to showing the characteristics of our iconic glass products, so we employed built-in LED lighting technology into all our fixed shelving. To really make our evergreen trees glow, we built the lighting into the surface of the shelves so trees are illuminated from underneath. The overall concept of the store was then rendered to capture our fresh aesthetic, that appeals to the customer that looks for our humanistic approach to design.
We utilized our retired wood molds from blowing glass, to create a textural wrap around our main counter. Neil Cockwill, Director of Forms, carefully selected and collaged the molds together, at our facility in Windsor, Vermont. We also feature our vine chandelier over the cash wrap counter as a focal point. We contracted Andrew Pearce to build a series of walnut and steel furniture, for us to use in cross merchandising statements.
The store design is featuring a separate studio space, in the back, that highlights our handcrafted pendants and lamps, which makes it easier for interior designers and customers to make buying decisions from our lighting collection. Our contractors worked quickly to demise the space, and go through the process of re-configuring it to suit our needs. They created the lighting studio out of a prior stock room by taking down walls, and rebuilding it into a useful space. The shelving around the store was custom built for us and they house all of our core products, delineated by their category.
Kathy Marshall, Creative Integration Manager, on the planogram:
“The product assortment for Ardmore is curated to include top performers and new designs, based on the store size. Within this framework, we assign categories of product to specific fixed shelves and dynamic displays, as well as carefully considering the placement of the product to make shopping easy.”
A few weeks before the store opening, a group of us visited the store location as the construction had begun to check on progress and interview candidates to work at the store.
Jen Smith, our new VP of Retail, started in July 2019, joined us after a long tenure at Crate & Barrel, rallied the retail team for an incredibly organized and quick opening.
“We had so much fun opening the Ardmore store – it was a fast and furious process! In just 3 days, we unloaded and unpacked 16 pallets of product and set the displays. It was a small, but mighty team! Opening in the busy holiday season meant that everyone had to be flexible and efficient.”
“Huge shout-outs to: Stephanie and Amanda, our warehouse managers, and the shipping team at our Oakland, MD facility, John and Josey, who delivered the product the moment we got the green light. Jackie, Retail Operations Project Manager, who coordinated all of the scheduling, travel, logistics and supplies for the store. Jeff, Field Visual Merchandising Manager, who set up the store visuals while training the new staff every step of the way. James and Kathy, who came up with the vision for the store and created a detailed and thorough planogram for execution. And our planning team who pulled the product from our warehouse to merchandise during the busiest time of the year!”
“Michael, the store manager, and Emily, full-time sales, had come up to Vermont for orientation, so they were immersed in the Simon Pearce culture, the Vermont way of life, and have a whole new appreciation for the artisans who create our product. They, along with our part-time sales associate, Colleen, have welcomed returning customers who remember our brand from Brandywine, and introduced new customers to Simon Pearce.”
From our founder, Simon Pearce:
“I started making glass because of the human quality you find in real handmade glass. One of the best ways to share that experience is to put the product directly into the hands of our customers. Opening a location in Philadelphia gives us the opportunity to better share our story with an important market for us.”
Nature uses force to script matter, and we do the same to manipulate raw molten glass. We draw out of our methods of making glass, the elements that have distinct character, and the artistic imperfections that come from the hand, to realize designs, that are ‘real’ expressions. With the ‘Elements’ development, we saw an opportunity to focus on the connection between design and science, using the forms to represent the various states of matter. We interpreted these natural elements that surround us in New England, with seven one of a kind, sculptural pieces. Three of which are featured in the Montshire Science Museum, from September 2019 to March 2020. It is an opportunity for the public and for children to experience how glass is a transformation from sand to the transparent material we are all familiar with, but in new forms.
We believe that our craftsmen have captured a sense of wonder and beauty portraying natural elements in glass and by pushing glass to its aesthetic and technical limits. These shapes show a mastery of light through glass and brings us at Simon Pearce to the forefront of creativity and innovation, through a design collaboration with master glassblowers.
Photo Credit: Montshire Museum of Science
The partnership with the Montshire Museum of Science started when Marcos Stafne and his team came to our facility in Windsor, Vermont, to discuss ideas around how the two upper valley organizations can cross-pollinate concepts and create something unique for people to experience. They liked the Elements prototypes and were intrigued with the science behind glassmaking, and brought these two concepts together for an exhibit at the museum. Sherlock and Katie, who create the exhibitions, evolved a wonderful way to interpret the glass Elements, revealing the process, and the science.
From the Montshire press release;
“For this collaborative exhibition, the Montshire partnered with Simon Pearce, a Vermont-based company specializing in handcrafted glass with a creative philosophy rooted in functional, sophisticated design. The Montshire Exhibits team worked closely with James Murray, Simon Pearce’s Vice President of Design, to create a beautiful experience in which science meets design.”
All seven elements we prototyped are described below:
Fire is the element that transforms the other elements. Glassblowers also need fire to create the glass itself. They capture the gesture and movement of flames in glass. The item is sculpted with the energy and flair of a burning flame. Each piece turns out entirely unique and can be illuminated on a LED base.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Dwight Yoder, Dave Osburn and Steve White.
Water covers seventy-five percent of the earth’s surface. This design was specifically inspired by the rushing waterfall at the Mill. The glassblowers captured the expressive ebb and flow of water that changes throughout the seasons. It is a very difficult design to make and only a few Simon Pearce glassblowers are able to make it. The development of this water vessel, and wrap technique led us to offer other lines using the wrap concept, such as the Waterbury and Echo Lake collections.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Mike Cushing, Mark Williams, Jason Tucker and Ray Thorburn.
You can find the separate blog post on this design here.
Wood is a pervasive element in New England, and is revered for the seasonal activity from chopping/limbing trees for firewood to handcrafting it into familiar objects. Here ‘wood’ is represented as a branch with truncated limbs, and a sandblasted hollow core. It is another difficult piece to craft, few glassblowers can capture the exact gesture and form. Wood is one of the five Chinese elements. Each piece can stand on a LED base.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Jesse McComas and Anthony Wroton.
Infinite space is the mother of the other elements. It represents the void, or emptiness that is necessary to approach a higher spiritual being. It is the gesture of a figure eight and is a free-form sculpture, with subtle surfaces and requires a high degree of skill to get the symmetry right. Each piece can be illuminated on an LED base.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Jason Cole and Jeremy Bastille.
Earth element is about structure and foundation; in nature it represents all that is solid and nourishing, which also speaks to global environmental issues. The design intent is to represent the whole globe and the topography of total earth, and also the swirling dynamics of mixing of elements, which has been captured in the glass.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Mike Cushing, Mark Williams, Jason Tucker, Ray Thorburn, and Chris Rogstad.
Air is a freeing and opportunistic element. The form represents the swirling forces of wind, similar to the aerial view of cloud formations of the weather, while also having an open center for a connection with infinite space. In glass, flat disks can be difficult to achieve when compared to shapes with more mass and volume, so this shows the control and skill the glassblower. This piece is displayed in a specially crafted metal stand made by Jan Mollmark.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Perry Schwab and Ryan Adams.
Metal represents both rigidity and flexibility; being a protective element it is strong but very adaptive to change. Metals are found in nature and in man-made structures, such as suspension bridges and other feats of engineering. The sculpture was created in clear glass with an infusion of silver leaf, to further highlight the connection to the metal element. It can be illuminated on a LED base.
The glassblowers who worked on this piece are Jake Cole and Jeremy Bastille.
Artistry, concentration, and the hand all contribute to the remarkable objects we turn out at our pottery workshop everyday. The challenge of building things from the ground up, with earthy clay takes a blend of virtuosity, muscle memory and a keen eye to what looks balanced and well proportioned.
Our latest artistic creation from the pottery is our Beachstone collection. The inspiration comes from the natural elements here in Vermont. Along the shore of Lake Champlain, particularity in the area of Shelburne farms, there are beach stones and rock formations that are made of 450-million-year-old, Iberville Shale.
The stones have beautiful graphic striations and veins of the mineral calcite, that inspired the sedimentary effects we wanted to capture in our clay. By experimenting with different colors of clay pushed together; we created the effect we wanted to achieve.
Jeff, our master potter, has a great deal of experience with unique techniques and has perfected marbling the clay and throwing forms on the Potter’s wheel that reveal the graphic striated layers of clay.
In design, we continue to be inspired by the natural surroundings here in Vermont. The immersion in Nature easily influences our perspective on developing objects, as the natural elements are filled with interesting forms, textures and colors. When we consider a new glass line, we strive to capture the artistry that comes from the handmade formation of glass, and the impressions that Nature makes on us. Fluid and malleable glass is almost unlimited in the possibilities of what can be achieved, and we impose our ideas and reflections on it.
While hiking the Waterbury Trail, we happened upon a small waterfall, and were stuck by how the element of water is always a delight for sense of sight, sound and touch. We also ventured to nearby Moss Glen Falls for a more dramatic experience. We wanted to capture the essence of water flowing and the swirling textures that occur in a new glass. We started R&D of the glasses based on sketches, but looked to the glassblowers to turn out each glass with a unique interpretation of the watery impression. Each glass captures a moment in time, with an artistic gesture.
The collection started with a tumbler, and then we scaled the same design up to a hurricane shape, which looks incredible with candlelight going through the swirling effects.
To compliment the tumbler, we created a carafe with a simple elegant form that lends itself to the layering process of gathers to create optic effects.
Thinking about lighting, and the interaction with gathered glass effects, Simon created the Waterbury lamp in two sizes, to compliment the collection. As the glassblowers work with these voluminous shapes, the layered effects of the double-gathered glass give a feeling of water movement that is visually stunning. The lamps come to life when you see the light going through the glass, much like the dynamic impression from the streams and waterfalls of Vermont.
We are pleased to open our 10th store today in our new Chestnut Hill, MA location. This store opening was made possible by the collaboration of key people with many different specialties, here at Simon Pearce. With this essential teamwork across departments, we have set a new bar for ourselves with this beautiful retail experience.
The store reflects a new direction of design, that takes people on a journey to discover a unique connection to us through glass and pottery. Our main intention of the store design, is to welcome the customers to explore the world of handcrafted excellence, and bring the essence of the Vermont landscape that inspires us to Chestnut Hill.
Overall, the store has a warm natural contemporary feel, with beautiful real materials of solid wood, wrought steel and earthy tones that are used throughout the main retail floor. It appeals to the customer that appreciates a humanistic approach to design, with a blend of our two important core concepts: exquisite iconic products and simple practicality to be enjoyed everyday. The product presentations are intended to inspire with dynamic displays and make shopping easy by categories. The planning and product development teams mapped out the store with focused planograms.
A copper-top bar, similar to the large one we have in our flagship Mill will highlight our barware, and connect back to Vermont. We are featuring a pair of our recently launched vine chandeliers that make a focal point in the center of the store. They show a new dimension of what we can do with our glass and the element of light.
In the front of the store we installed a large scale video screen, that reveals the mastery that goes into our products, with the artisans that make them.
The retail team, lead by Dana Sabatino, VP of Customer Experience, coordinated efforts to outfit the store and finesse the product displays.
The store fixturing is an assortment of furniture designed specifically for this new location. The combination of solid walnut and burnished steel create a streamlined aesthetic for the retail floor. Jan Mollmark built the illuminated shelving units throughout the store, that feature our quintessential glass and pottery.
From drawing to reality.
We partnered with Andrew Pearce to have the pieces hand-built here in Vermont, at his facility in Hartland. Andrew and his team worked over the span of many weeks to refine the construction details for both the steel welding and wood, to finish it all under one roof. The result is an elegant group, built to last.
The new store design features a separate studio space in the back that highlights our handcrafted pendants, and lamps with a table in the center, where interior designers can meet with clients.
The studio is also conducive to the Gift Registry, where customers have this work table on which to create their ideal place-setting, or to choose the personalized assortment that they would want to have in their home.
The retail team has opened the doors!
“The new store is fantastic; awesome job by all. Thank you.” -Simon Pearce
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.