Answered By: Beth Hylen
Last Updated: Oct 27, 2016     Views: 38

Please tell me more about your process. Are you using a mold? Are you using glass powder or frit? How are you using them? Are you using a binder? I don't need your secrets - just a general idea.

Meanwhile, I'm sending information about pate de verre. The term is interpreted various ways and there is a lot of debate whether ancient glass can be called "pate de verre" or "glass paste."

From the CMoG "Dictionary on Glass"

Pâte de verre


Pâte de Verre

(French, “glass paste”) A material produced by grinding glass into a fine powder, adding a binder to create a paste, and adding a fluxing medium to facilitate melting. The paste is brushed or tamped into a mold, dried, and fused by firing. After annealing, the object is removed from the mold and finished.

Alternate Spellings
pate du verre
pate da verre
pate de vare

According to the dictionary, "paste" is NOT:


These terms and their French and Italian equivalents, pâte de verre and pasta vitrea, have been used since at least the 17th century to describe the composition of small objects such as medallions and imitations of precious stones. However, their use to describe such objects is incorrect (they were made with molten glass, sometimes with a high lead content), and they should be restricted to objects of pâte de verre, as described in the next entry. (copied above)

This video describes classic "pate de verre":

"[Pate de verrre]... is another casting technique that—like glassblowing—only works with glass. Whereas glassblowing was invented around 50 B.C., pâte de verre is a process invented in France in the 19th century. It allows subtle gradations of color, possible with no other glassworking process."

There are other videos of the Higuchis style of pate de verre on the CMoG website ( - search Higuchi or pate de verre).

You may search the museum's glass collection to find pieces that our curators have identified as "pate de verre" in our cataloging records:

An upcoming class at CMoG uses this definition: 

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,