Nikko Winter Wonderland features a beautiful, folk art tableau of ice skaters on a frozen pond under the light of a crescent moon and a star-filled night sky, surrounded by charming depictions of wintertime houses and trees. Winter Wonderland perfectly complements the accompanying Gibraltar-Juniper glassware and Hartsdale flatware. In 1908, Nikko Ceramics was founded in Kanazawa, Japan. The company moved its operation to Hakusan City, Japan in 1961, and founded a subsidiary in the United States in 1968. According to company literature, Nikko creates tableware “with the spirit of craftsmanship and a company culture of high aesthetic sense.” Nikko products have won a worldwide reputation for quality and design that endures today.
Libbey/Rock Sharpe Gibraltar-Juniper is pressed glass with a convex bowl that features thumbprint panels with a knobbed stem and round foot. The Libbey Glass Company was founded in 1818 as The New England Glass Company in East Cambridge, Massachusetts. According to Bob Page and Dale Frederiksen in “A Collection of American Crystal: A Stemware Identification Guide for Glastonbury/Lotus, Libbey/Rock Sharpe & Hawkes,” William L. Libbey and his son, Edward D. Libbey, purchased New England Glass in the late 1870s and moved the company to Toledo, Ohio in 1888, lured there by an abundance of natural gas and other natural resources in the area. The name of the company was changed to “The Libbey Glass Company” in 1892. In 1893, Libbey staged a huge exhibition at the Chicago World’s Fair in which they constructed an entire glass plant on the fairgrounds. Showcasing the glassmaking process to crowds of up to 2,000 at a time, the Libbey exhibit was one of the fair’s most popular attractions, and became a huge marketing success for the company. In 1889, Libbey made a commemorative cut glass punch bowl for President McKinley, and by 1900, Libbey was known as one of the finest cut glass producers in the world. In 1935, Libbey Glass Company merged with Owens-Illinois, another glassmaking company specializing in bottle-making and jar production. In 1948, Owens-Illinois acquired the Cataract-Sharpe Manufacturing Company, which specialized in decorating stemware, tumblers, and accessory pieces supplied by other firms. Libbey is still in operation today, and is currently the second-largest glassmaker in the world.
The understated elegance of the Mikasa stainless steel Hartsdale pattern is fantastic! This elegant stainless steel pattern features a glossy finish and a tasteful beveled design. In the early 1930s, Mikasa was established as an international trading company based in Secaucus, New Jersey. The company, while wholly American, looked to Japan for inspiration. Named in honor of Prince Mikasa, the youngest brother of Emperor Hirohito, Mikasa soon established itself as one of the most recognized Japanese brand names in the West. Importing merchandise produced by a network of over 150 manufacturers worldwide, the company itself never attempted to make any of the dinnerware it sold. Rather, the Mikasa branded items were imported from Japan, Ireland, England, France, and Germany. Business exploded in the 1950s, and tableware became the staple business for Mikasa. Customer requests were pouring in from all parts of the country, and department stores including Bloomingdale's and Macy's could not keep enough stock to meet demand. Consumers found Mikasa ceramics to be very strong, versatile, and stylish. By the beginning of the 1960s, Mikasa had established a reputation as "the pioneer of American casual." Today, Mikasa continues to leverage the momentum it has built over the decades since its inception.
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