Apr 18, 2018 103

blog - Annieglass


More than 30 years ago, Annie Morhauser fell in love with the beauty of glass when she saw an artisan glassblowing at a beach under a full moon. After graduating from California College of the Arts with training in a range of glassmaking techniques, she went on to develop her own version of slumping, an ancient glass-forming process, which marked the beginning of Annieglass.


Annieglass' original tour de force was a piece called Roman Antique—a plate of thick glass with a handpainted rim of 24-karat gold. Annie took it to a trade show in 1983 and astounded the retail industry with this entirely new look in dinnerware that was surprisingly also dishwasher-safe. Today, Roman Antique is an icon  — sold at luxury retailers such as Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales and, of course, Gump's. Annieglass is used at leading hotels and restaurants, including the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, the Ritz-Carlton, and the Waldorf Astoria Hotels and Resorts.


Twice a year, Annie introduces new collections and extensions to existing ones. Inspirations are often Annie's interpretations of her surroundings—the fantastic natural beauty of the Monterey Bay region and Santa Cruz Mountains, travel, science or history. Her design process is ongoing, experimenting with new materials and technologies, often blending time-honored techniques with modern innovations, or inventing methods of her own alongside her talented team of artisans.


Select collections are handpainted with 24-karat gold and genuine platinum, and then each piece is individually set by hand into kilns, where at high temperatures the glass drapes over handmade ceramic molds. Precious metals permanently fuse to the glass during this step, and the glass “slumps” into their mold’s individual patterns, rendering each piece of Annieglass a unique work of art.

The precious metals reveal her artisans’ individual brushstrokes, as well as a slightly distressed appearance from the organic materials’ movement during kiln firing. Rather than being defects, these effects are intentional — celebrating the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, in which asymmetry and “imperfection” enhance beauty.


Perhaps one of Annieglass' finest examples of innovative glassmaking, the Edgey collection is the result of countless years of experimentation with glass and precious metals.

After edges are hand chipped and painted, each piece is set into a kiln to undergo Annieglass’ unique “slumping” process — losing sharp edges while retaining dramatic texture and permanently fusing precious metals to the glass.

From the kiln to your table, Edgey is a collection of contemporary glass tableware – plates, platters and bowls that exude sophisticated rawness and show-stopping beauty.


Annie’s most innovative new product to date fuses science and art with ecological responsibility. Made from recycled Annieglass scrap in a revolutionary new way, Elements is a collection of thickly cut organically shaped trivets and appetizer trays.

Combining ancient glassmaking techniques with modern technology, Annie has applied for a patent for her ingenious solution for recycled glass. Reused scrap glass has never been so elegantly repurposed and its design minimizes her footprint on the planet.


Gump’s significant role in supporting contemporary artists dates back to the 1870s, and we continue that tradition to this day. Carefully selected for their unique and innovative creations, our designers, like Annie Morhauser, are among the finest in the industry. Shop our Annieglass collection online or see an extended collection at 135 Post Street in San Francisco.