Moser: the King of Glass, Glass of the Kings!

Colored and engraved Moser rock glasses
colored and engraved Moser rock glasses

Logo Moser

Moser Glassworks is the prestigious Bohemian glass manufacturer founded by Ludwig Moser. The company is situated in Karlovy Vary, (in German: Karlsbad), an already for centuries famous spa city in Western Bohemia, in the Czech Republic. Moser glassworks is acknowledged around the world as a manufacturer of luxury, high quality glass products, like fine stemware, decorative glassware (such as vases, ashtray, candlestick), luxury glass gifts and various art engravings. 

Ludwig Moser (1833 - 1916)

Ludwig Moser and the History of Moser Glassworks 

Ludwig Moser was born in Karlovy Vary in 1833 at that time a city in the Austrian-Hungarian empire. As an apprentice he was trained in painting and engraving glassware and worked in this profession at several companies in Prague and Karlovy Vary. In 1857 he had the opportunity to start his own company in the city of Weimar. His company was a glass engraving workshop with a glass shop. His engravings gained more and more popularity, the company did well and in 1866 he moved his company to Karlovy Vary, which was a top location at that time, because all the rich and famous visited the spas.
A Moser drink set

After a few years doing good business in all kind of popular Bohemian products like crystal chandeliers and mirrors, he started focusing on luxury goblets and glass centerpieces. The blank glassware he bought from top Bohemian glass manufacturers, like Loetz and Harrachov, and Moser and his workers decorated the pieces with gold, engravings and paintings.
His reputation as the most prestigious producer of crystal in the Austrian-Hungarian monarchy earned him the title of court supplier of emperor Franz Joseph I in 1873. 

Ludwig Moser had a vision and bought in 1893 a glass manufacturing company in Meierhöfen near Karlovy Vary. Together with two of his sons he made it an ultra modern glass factory with many decorating facilities. This attracted the best glass technicians and glass artists, and under the charismatic leadership of Ludwig Moser, the glassworks became world famous. This resulted in the title of court supplier for the Persian shah in 1901 and, the crown on his work, the title of court supplier of king Edward VII of England in 1908.
Moser glassworks received also numerous prices at exhibitions.

Vases, in transparent smoke and opaque white
 design 2013 by Lukas Jaburek

When Ludwig Moser died in Karlovy Vary in 1916, he had made it to one of the most outstanding personalities of glass manufacturing in the world. He had a genius for business, knew exactly which markets would become good and, on top of that, he had an eye for design and he always included new art influences, like Art Nouveau, in his designs. He left his sons a flourishing company and, in fact, the biggest production of luxury glassware and decorative glass pieces of the Czech Republic.

Leo Moser took the position of his father over in 1913. His biggest achievement was the introduction of the production of colored glass which, till today, are known as the famous Moser colors. After leaving the office in 1932 and selling all the family shares in 1938, Moser glassworks was officially not connected to the Moser family anymore, however, the name Moser Glassworks was re-established, after the fall of the communism in the beginning of the nineties of the last century, as a tribute to the founder and his sons.

Drinking set in Moser colors
design 1935 by Rudolf Eschler
Drinking set - design 1935 Rudolf Eschler

Moser Glassworks Today

Nowadays, the glass manufactory is a joint stock company with entirely Czech capital and approximately 320 employees.
In line with the founder, the company is still focused on design and production of high quality glassware. Items which were designed from 1870 till 1935 are still produced next, to designs from new artists. One of the great artists of Moser Glassworks is Art Director and head of the design and development department (Studio Moser), Lukas Jaburek

Moser glassworks is proud to use a lead-free glass type since they started the production in their first glass factory. They call it crystal glass. The material is very clear, doesn’t contain lead and is much harder than lead crystal, but still very good for cutting and engraving. If Ludwig Moser already knew, about 80 years after his dead, that lead would become a problematic component in drinking ware, remains an unanswered question. Fact is that his choice for a lead-free formula of his crystal glass benefits the company now in their marketing.
(For more information about the definition of crystal click here)
Crystal trophies by Moser

Crystal trophies by Moser

Moser Colors 

Since the introduction of colored glass by Leo Moser, the company has a portfolio of a staggering 450 color formulas. The secret of the production of the famous Moser colors rests in combining the highest quality raw materials which are melted with the admixture of precious soils and metal oxides. Thanks to the abilities of the Moser glass makers and the creativity of the Moser glass artists, unique products of various color combinations and shades are made in the glass works.

Typical Moser colors are also used for the popular six-colour sets consisting of crystal (clear), aquamarine (light blue), rosaline (pink), beryl (light green), eldor (light yellow), topaz (honey brown) and alexandrite (light violet). 
Alexandrite is a very special color because it changes its intensity and color shade from bluish to dark violet, depending on the kind of lighting. 
Drinking set Optic - design 2012 by Lukas Jaburek
Drinking set Optic - design 2012 Lukas Jaburek

Moser celebrated the 155th anniversary in 2012. The company founded by a talented business man and celebrated glass engraver, long ago in Bohemia, has now entered the 21st century. Although 155 years is a long time, Moser Glassworks shows the world that it is not at all an older company profiting from old successes. Moser glassworks is today still that flexible and innovative company making beautiful luxury glassware, as how it once began.