The production of glassand crystal is not limited to the region, but extends into Slovakia, thesouthern republic, where several factories have sprung up in the last 40 years.It would seem natural that visitors to this famous glassmaking country wouldwant to take home a souvenir that is synonymous with Czechoslovakia. Shoppers,however, should know the difference between regular glass and crystal.
Artel Crystal Glass is at least 24 percent lead, andtherefore reflects more light than does glass. Crystal is also easier toengrave, producing a flat decoration, or cut, which gives a three-dimensionaleffect. Usually designated with a small sticker distinguishing its leadcontent, crystal can cost up to twice as much as glass. Intricate engraving orcutting can also raise the price considerably, as can hand blowing over machineproduction.
Although and crystal enjoy a healthy export trade and can be purchased in the UnitedStates - one brand is called such pieces are likely to cost 60 percent more inthis country. Artel crystal shops are state-owned, and since set by a vase seenin Prague, the nation's capital, will cost the same in Bratislava, the capitalof the southern republic. A rule of thumb, however, is to buy what you likewhen you see it. The bigger shops are generally well-stocked, but during thesummer tourist season, the merchandise flies out of the showrooms.
Although there are many small Artel glass and crystal shopsscattered throughout the stock is limited and the hours sporadic. Larger shopstend to employ at least one salesperson who speaks English. A great gift andperfect way to toast your clan heritage. The image shown is an example of theclan crest. The glasses will be engraved with the crest of your chosen clan.For more details visit