Hand Blown vs Machine Blown

I’m surprised at how many people describe machine blown ornaments as hand blown.  Corning in the 1930s developed ribbon-blowing machines for blowing glass ornaments. Age of the ornament does not define whether an ornament is machine or hand blown.  

So, when you’re looking at a simple sphere shape,how can you tell the difference?  Believe it or not, there is a way to do so.   Here’s how you can tell the difference between a hand blown ornament and one that is ribbon blown or machine blown.  Look at these two examples.  I’ve taken these photos just to show you what to look for.

Hand Blown Sphere Machine Blown Sphere



On any hand blown ornament, you will always find a “dimple” where the glassblower touched the ornament while the glass was hot, to shape and form it. I’ve put arrows in this photo to show you where the dimples on these ornaments are. On a machine blown ornament, you’ll never find a dimple.  This example shows two machine blown spheres.  Both are Shiny Brite from the USA. 


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