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Handmade & Machine Made Glass Marbles

Carpet Balls or Carpet Bowls

Carpet balls are white pottery spheres used in the British Isles for various games, primarily for an indoor version of the game of Bowls. A small ball or jack was used as a target for the larger balls. It is believed that the game originated in Scotland or England. Small carpet balls of often only 2 5/8" in diameter were used as jacks in the games with bowls as large as 3 3/4" in diameter. Carpet balls come in a wide variety of sizes between these two.

Carpet balls are made of glazed porcelain china, with various designs painted on them:

  • Groups of lines of different colors interescting one another.
  • One wide line of one color intesected by groups of fine lines of another color.
  • A polka dot pattern with a frilled colored rim and a colored dot in the center.
Carpet balls come in any type of color imaginable, including red, brown, yellow, green, blue, and black. These spheres are quite collectible since they are very hard to find, especially in the U.S.A.

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Marble Paperweights

Marble paperweights are circular, some about 2 1/2" in diameter and only 1 3/4" high. These may have been made by a marble maker with some spare time to produce this large a piece. Most paperweights are made in the same way as the marbles, with onionskin or swirl patterns in the glass, or perhaps a suphide figure.

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Modern Machine-made Marbles

These are made in much the same was as the early machine-made marbles and come in a wide variety of colors and patterns. Some are created to represent the clay Benningtons of yesteryear, the handmade German swirls, and early glass imitation agates.

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