View Full Version : A shaft and globe learns self respect

10-26-2012, 10:33 AM
I posted this little ditty and pics on one of the UK forums some months ago, and thought you guys might like to see it... (get yourself a cup of coffee first! - you'll get used to my posts, sorry!)

Once upon a time (in around 1670) there was a little shaft and globe bottle, a nice strong, deep bodied individual with a medium to long neck and a nice "hat" on his head with a good brim. He was regularly filled, corked, uncorked, emptied and refilled, he was pushed back and forth on the dining table until his bottom got rough, his insides glowing with wine and filling dainty wine glasses which he enjoyed, listening to the conversations and the laughter and he liked to think that people appreciated the job he was doing holding his precious contents. But sometimes humans, the rough, shouting ones sometimes ripped his nice copper wire off tied around his stringrim and dug at his wooden stopper and threw it away and then put his whole head in their mouth and glugged down his insides, slavering sickeningly with terrible blubbery lips that you didn't know where they might have been!

....Ugh! that was the one part of being a bottle he didn't like. Then one day, minding his own business, enjoying just sitting there in the dark cellar with his friends and wondering how long it had been since his insides, which were empty would be filled once again, and when the dust would be rubbed off his surface, when suddenly he was scooped up on a shovel, thrown into a wooden barrow and trundled off to the woods, where without a moment to steady himself he was tipped out and fell down and down a long rocky slope, banging himself time and again, rolling ever more quickly until suddenly he hit a huge stone which agonizingly cracked his neck and broke off all his beloved hat, his cherished string rim and deep lip, and much of his neck, broke away and lost to him for ever...

He sat in the bottom of this wet hole, for how long he didn't know. His sides got wet continually and his skin was leached away in places, and left a multicoloured goldy iridescence there, which got better and better, but he always missed his nice long neck and his stringrim and his deep lip....

And so he sat for years, until one day a human showed him the sunlight, he was bottom up at first, and the human was grabbing him around his unmentionables, and gradually feeling around his body and pulling steadily. The little shaft and globe didn't know what to say!, but he was ashamed to be seen, and the human gradually ever so carefully pulled him out of the mud and stone and was cheering and excaliming "yes, yes....it is....!"...until suddenly the human pulled him right out and saw his neck, or rather the sorry stump of it, and swore loudly and profainly..."shit...shit...oh bloody shit!".... said the human and put him still carefully in his bag.

The little shaft and globe stood in an old garden shed for years, and humans would come and go, looking at him and saying "oh...damn shame that!"... and would pass him on..... and the little bottle grew ever more ashamed and developed a complex, and for two pins would have started smoking, if only he had had a cigarette....and could smoke....but then finally he was taken to a big show and put on a stand amongst other bottles, but which were complete and he hid his face in shame, and someone bought him home and put him on their shelf, and showed his wife the little shaft and globe's nice iridescence on his body and the wife said how lovely he was, and the little shaft and globe began to think that perhaps he didn't look too bad and this new owner seemed to quite like him.

And one day he was sent to another place where he was put with many other bottles the same age as he was, but nearly all totally complete and very proud of themselves, and some of them had special seals on their shoulders and were very conceited about it and showed off. "Look at my date" they said, "see how my body shines, and look at my pontil"...(at this stage they would often show him their bottom, and sometimes he just didn't know where to look!!), and they laughed at him and said "but you're all damaged" and "you're valueless" they said. But the little shaft and globe remembered he had got a good iridescence apparently and was admired by women and he was strong body and didn't let them bully him.

Then one day he was taken up and had this horrible grey gloopy stuff slopped around his stump on his neck, and his body was coated with some special wax that felt good and made his skin stop peeling off. The grey gloopy stuff went hard, it was a funny feeling, and then more gloopy stuff was put on, and more again, and then he was picked up and a dreadful loud noise and vibrating and the grey gloopy stuff was ground down and there was dust everywhere. Then more was put on him, and more grinding...it was worse than being at the dentists, which he always hated, and then the human started to scrape at his new grey prothesis and it was tickly but interesting, and there was more gloopyiness and more grinding and scraping, until one day his new shape was pronounced acceptable. At this stage he was sprayed with a dense choking paint, just his new bit, and let dry and then again, and then there was some more scraping, and a little more gloop, and grinding and scraping again, and more paint. then finally he saw some special bottles with bright glittery colours in them, and the human was carefully painting the gold and metallic colours on his head, and swearing and then rubbing them off and doing it again, and more colours and different colours, and he was gradually built up. the little shaft and globe realised he had had his picture taken every day and wondered what the end result would be, but finally the grand day came, and his own human came back and picked him up and said "oh wow, that's great"....and turned him round and round until he was dizzy, and his human showed him to his wife and put him on his shelves with his other aged bottles, and the little shaft and globe was very proud of his new neck and his wide saturn stringrim and deep lip, and especially of his bright metallic colours which more or less matched his body now.

And then his picture appeared on a forum and he was famous.
Once again he was a proud shaft and globe with a medium long neck and a whole body and he could respect himself once again!

The end.....

earlyglasscollector www.earlyglass.com


10-26-2012, 11:07 AM
Holy Crap Mark!!! That's a restore I could love!!!
Most would probably unsick the glass and try for a "like new" repair.
That is just totally fantastic!!!

10-26-2012, 12:30 PM
So it's fixed with epoxy and painted to match Mark, the results are great...

10-26-2012, 05:19 PM
thanks for the kind replies.
Yes straightforward restoration just done with a feeling for shape and an artists eye for colour etc. Look good on display and even a short distance. Just when you handle and look closely you can usually see exactly what is restored and what isn't.
Invisible restorations are amazing, but they frighten me. Give me this sort of restoration any day. But above all it is SO satisfying to rescue an item that otherwiseis overlooked and rejected, but becomes once again a thing of beauty and even desire.

Would guys over here REALLY remove all that super iridescence?!!!! jeez, to us that is the value of the thing, better aesthetically than a mint one for a fraction of the price.
But it's all in the eye of the beholder, and good job we aren't all the same.

Mark earlyglass www.earlyglass.com

10-26-2012, 09:45 PM

10-26-2012, 10:14 PM
Wow...super nice job!

bottle man
10-27-2012, 07:17 PM
Unbelievable job! Looks awesome.[:D]

10-27-2012, 09:58 PM

Hello Mark,

Scarily well done restoration, sir! A true trompe l'oeil painting. Bravo!


andy volkerts
10-27-2012, 10:07 PM
ORIGINAL: surfaceone


Hello Mark,

Scarily well done restoration, sir! A true trompe l'oeil painting. Bravo!


[:)][:)][:)] Sure as he-- beats a tumble and restoration. beautifully done!! and all that patina really makes it a special bottle!!

10-29-2012, 06:44 AM
Would guys over here REALLY remove all that super iridescence?!!!!Not me, no way!! I'd also be happy with it broken.

10-31-2012, 05:00 AM
Truly splendid restoration, that thing is beautiful! Bravo man! Bravo!

How did you get that splotchy and iridescent look on the restored part? Is that grey stuff bondo? Is there a product or 2 or 4 that I could use to achieve similar colorful results or was it far more complicated than the clever "bottle-eye-view" would lead us to believe?

No need to give away any secrets, but i'd love to try the same on my own damaged iridescent bottles. No way in heck that they would get tumbled, while I'm alive anyway.

10-31-2012, 08:43 AM
The grey stuff is just straightforward fibreglass car body filler of various makes. two part mix.
That's no secret. But probably other substances could be used as well, I just find that that gives a hard enough surface that can be gradually filed away and sanded and scraped at to subtley, slowly and carefully achieve the right shape. It takes several goes to build up the complete shape on anything other than a small chip, with various filing back into a rough shape each time as you can see. I even find that when I'm close to finishing there might be odd little pits or bits sticking out just where the stuff has hardened funny, which sometimes I leave there, which when painted over actually help it look more like odd, in manufacture faults of the glassblower's shaping etc. These just happen by fate I guess!
The success of this procedure is in patience and simply a feel for the shape of these things. I use dremel drills and various small cutting knifes and files and sandpaper and abrasive pads of various sorts to achieve both the basic shape and then the final finish. You have to look for any striations in the original glass and perhaps follow these on into the new area, perhaps even mimic a small chip or two....it's fun really!
The colouring, well perhaps that is the secret, but it's not.......... I use a variety of paints, dies, inks and other substances, most of which I've experimented with over the years, but above all I guess you got to have an artists skill with colours and brushes, really looking at what is there already and trying to match it. I wouldn't consider my self an artist but I did do 4 years at art school and been a graphic designer most of my life begfore I went full time bottle dealing.
Different iridescences require totally different treatments, and often I start one way, but end up totally redoing it another way. It's sometimes an experiment each time, and sometimes a happy accident happens that you recognise and use.
I do sometimes do it on commission, but probably can never really charge the true time and effort it takes me, but it is very satisfying to rescue things like this and I take that aspect as part payment. Seeing the look of delight on some of the owner's faces when they first see the result is good in itself.
But at the same time, there will never be any issues with anyone mistaking these or trying to pass them on as complete and original. Look pretty close with the bottle in your hand (and your specs on)and you will see, that if nothing else the glass is solid black, not translucent. I cannot do this treatment very easily on a lighter colour bottle.
earlyglass www.earlyglass.com

10-31-2012, 09:19 AM
Brilliant explanation! though I would like to probe further (particularly regarding achieving the iridescent sheen) I will respect the "secrets" learned after years of dedicated experience. [:)]

"Iridescent" is my favorite "color" though, so i will chase those secrets for quite some time!

Your work and mindset is splendid. Great stuff man. Truly great stuff.

If you have any other examples of your restorations please do post them, as I'm sure many besides myself would greatly appreciate seeing the manifestation of years of skill combined with raw talent. Not to butter your buns or anything, but yeah, your work is darn good.