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Jewels For The Table

Jewels For The Table

Estelle Colored Glass Pieces Are Luxury Home Goods Designed To Make People Happy

“I consider my handblown colored glass cake stands and stemware jewels for the table,” says Stephanie Summerson Hall, the founder of the South Carolina-based Estelle Colored Glass. “They are statement pieces that are meant to be handed down as heirlooms.”

Hall says their beauty lies in the fact that they are luxuries designed to make life more enjoyable whether you have a table full of holiday guests or are dining solo in the soft glow of candlelight.

“Color universally makes people happy,” she says. “And color is what makes my pieces extraordinary.”

Estelle Colored Glass’s founder, Stephanie Summerson Hall, with her company’s stemware.

Photo Credit: Catherine Hurt

Hall, a self-described serial entrepreneur who founded Ruth’s House Event Rentals and co-founded Wedding Flowers for Rent, started thinking about colors and colored glass when she built a new home.

“I was looking for forever collections for it,” she says. “And colored glass pieces reminded me of my own upbringing.” That upbringing included going antiquing with her paternal grandmother, Estelle, in honor of whom the company is named.

“We used to do day trips,” Hall says. “She was always adding to her colored glass collection, and she often used the pieces at Sunday dinners.”

Estelle’s signature dessert—a made-from-scratch vanilla pound cake served with a side of strawberry Jell-O topped with whipped cream—was displayed on a colored glass cake stand.

A colorful cake stand from the South Carolina-based company

Photo Credit: Catherine Hurt

“I spent five years developing designs,” Hall says. “The cake stand, which brings back so many family memories, was my original idea.”

She commissioned designs for it and for stemware from artisans at a more-than-a-century-old Polish glassmaking company, and by fall 2019 she debuted Estelle Colored Glass, whose products are sold in 225 shops around the U.S.

“While the designs are modern and updated to fit into the contemporary home, they do remind me of gazing into Estelle’s china cabinet,” Hall says, adding that she’s been told by others that they bring back childhood memories.

She keeps her own close to home: Estelle Colored Glass ships from a warehouse in Holly Hill, S.C., that’s five minutes from where she grew up and five minutes from where Estelle, affectionately also known as Big Mama, lived.

Hall, who says she lives her life by the color wheel—swapping out winter’s rich jewel tones for spring and summer’s pastel home accents—is inspired in large part by haute couture.

Wine glass from the South Carolinabased company

Photo Credit: Catherine Hurt

The petal-soft rose colorway in her company’s collection, for example, is inspired by a Gucci dress, and the luscious lavender hue is a nod to an elegantly delicate gown by Elie Saab.

In March Estelle Colored Glass introduced Champagne flutes to the collection, and in late summer or early fall will add highball and lowball glasses as well as a vase.

Although Hall doesn’t set a formal table all the time—she has four children under the age of 14 who have busy schedules—she does use her stemware to make each meal a festive occasion.

“I look in my china cabinet and I may pull out a Champagne coupe even though I’m not drinking Champagne,” she says. “It brings in a few minutes of luxury in my everyday life.”

When she has down time, she still loves looking for vintage treasures. “My children aren’t into antiquing—yet,” she says. “But when I go, I’m like a kid in a candy shop.”

As far as the future of Estelle Colored Glass, Hall will continue to look to the past for direction.

“I’ll keep creating beautiful things that tell stories and keep memories alive,” she says.

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