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Inspiration found at the Museum of Glass and Jewelry in Jablonec nad Nisou, Czechia

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It has been two years since I visited the Museum of Glass and Jewelry in Jablonec nad Nisou for the last time. At that time I was tempted to visit the exhibition of the glass art. Till today, I still remember a different part, namely the exposition of jewelry, namely the exposition of handmade glass buttons.

Inspiration found at the Museum of Glass and Jewelry in Jablonec nad Nisou, Czechia

At the time, I was engaged in manufacturing men's shirts under my own brand SmartMen. In the traditional glass buttons I immediately saw the similarity to cuff links. But I could not find cufflinks in the glass buttons exhibition.

Cuff links as a new application for the traditional Bohemian glass button

Cuff links are an elegant accessory to men's shirts with a French cuff. Several those double-cuff shirts we have in our SmartMen shirts collection and they are selling very well. So I was tempted to create my own collection of glass hand-pressed cuff links exclusively for our new SmartMen shirt collection.

Design and making of glass cuff links samples

First sample of the YABLOGLASS gold cufflinkIn the first year I put this idea somewhere back in my head. I did not do anything in particular. It was only later that I entrusted the idea of decorating the cuff link with a traditional Bohemian glass knob to a friend, merchant of jewelry and costume jewelery components. He recommended me to one of the last active manufacturers of the traditional hand-pressed glass buttons in Jablonec, ELEGANT CZ s.r.o. My vision for the renaissance of the hand-pressed glass buttons in Jablonec began to be fulfilled in mid 2016.

With the help of the employees of the company ELEGANT CZ and thanks to their contacts to private glass pressers, which in fact remained very few only, the first samples of cuff links with hand-pressed and painted glass buttons were created during 2016.

The traditional Bohemian glass button is history

First sample of the YABLOGLASS silver cuffllinkThe Bohemian buttons are well known around the world. In Jablonec, especially in the neighbouring villages of Jizerske mountains (Smrzovka, Janov nad Nisou, Bedrichov, Josefuv Dul, Lucany), there was a hand-pressing of glass buttons the daily bread of a substantial part of the local population. Small buildings with one or two furnace chimneys, drickets (from the German Drückhütten) were spread out in the hills of the Jizerske mountains. Old pliers (tongs) are found on the abandoned soils of chalets and cottages till today. Unfortunately, the skilled craftsmen are scarce.

The unique combination of glass and metal costume jewelry

In the parent company of ELAGANT CZ, a producer of costume jewelry and jewelery components AG Plus s.r.o. in Jablonec nad Nisou was made the mechanical closing for the new cuff links, as is known from the standard cuff links. We have decided to finish the gold cuff links with 14k yellow gold plating. Silver cufflinks are made of rhodium-plated metal jewelry (brass). By combining the traditional hand-pressed glass button and the metal closing, a stylish and practical jewelry accessory for men's shirts has been created - the new glass cuff link.

New cuff links brand YABLOGLASS

YABLOGLASS logoThe idea of the revival of the already forgotten craft of manual pressing and the artistic painting of the glass buttons in Jablonec has made us so pleased, that we have created a new brand of exclusive YABLOGLASS cuff links next to our own brand of SmartMen men's shirts. The YABLOGLASS trade mark carries in the logo the petal theme of the apple tree - symbol of the statutory town of Jablonec nad Nisou, Czechia, our birthplace and the seat of the company.

We build on the tradition of our ancestors

Photography of an old press-houseWhen I mention my ancestors, who belong to the original inhabitants of the Sudetenland, and next to their house in Maxov (German Maxdorf, 10 km from Jablonec / German Gablonz), they operated a small pressing-house and until 1948 they pressed glass buttons as private entrepreneurs, and on the other side of the family immigrants from central Bohemia to the north of Bohemia after the end of World War II, who spent their entire professional life in the glass button factory in Hranicna, you are sure to understand our enthusiasm for the glass button and its new use in fashion.

New collection of glass cuff links YABLOGLASS in 2017

YABLOGLASS cufflinkIn the first half of 2017 we introduced the first collection of YABLOGLASS glass cuff links, which can be purchased at our eshop www.yabloglass.com. The United States, British and European Union version of the eshop followed shortly thereafter. The costume jewelry made in Jablonec nad Nisou is and always was an export article. The YABLOGLASS cufflinks can be globally purchased on Amazon, eBay and other online marketplaces. In the near future, we would like to penetrate to world markets as well as a supplier to jewelry stores and fashion accessories. Most of all, we are looking forward to creating the next collection of the glass cuff links. Choosing from thousands of preserved patterns of glass buttons and giving a new life to them is a great experience for us.

Thanks for the cooperation with the design and making of the glass cuff links

Craft of hand pressing of glass buttonsWhen designing and manufacturing the YABLOGLASS cuff links, we would like to thank the ELEGANT CZ employees lead by Mrs. Marcela Salvova, and the employees of AG Plus lead by Mrs. Katerina Brezovska, and above all the pressers, who from time to time heat the furnace and keep the craft of hand-pressed buttons in Jablonec alive.

Since this post is at the end, there is no place for a more detailed description of the glass buttons exposition in the Museum of Glass and Jewelry in Jablonec nad Nisou. I promise to write a short reprtage, including photographic documentation, in the next article.

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