Chance Brothers

About Chance Brothers

Chance Brothers operated exclusively from Smethwick, England, from 1824 until 1981 when flat glass production was absorbed into the parent company's plant, Pilkington, at St. Helens. Chance Brothers was a the leading lighthouse, scientific and optical glass producer.

Fiestaware was Chance's most successful creation: mass-produced glassware for the domestic market that stood the test of time over a period of thirty years. This glassware was produced flat-rolled sheet glass with decorative screen- and transfer-prints applied prior to it being formed to shape, by reheating and slumping. The most popular creations were from the 'Fiestaware' range that eminent designers Michael Harris and Margaret Casson helped create, with the most popular designs being Swirl (1955), Calypto (1959, Harris) and Lace. One well-known and highly collectable pattern by Margaret Casson is 'Night Sky' (1957).

Fiestaware was often finished with a gilt rim, but this is not always the case, and while the common dove-grey (often called white) silk-screen-transfer on clear glass is seen as the norm, there are many other variations; for example green, black and gold transfers on clear glass and gold transfers on ruby-flashed glass can be found.

Additionally, Chance Brothers produced a wide range of 'Crestware' (items containing the names of towns, for example) and a wide range of 'Floral' ware (produced between c.1961-81).