Handcrafted Design:
Czechoslovakian Crystal Stemware

While reflecting on my blog post on elegant table settings last week, I was left reminiscing about a trip that I took to Prague a few years ago. The city of Prague dates back over 1,000 years and thus has a very rich heritage and cultural identity. Even through terrible hardships – such as Hitler’s occupation of Czechoslovakia and the Cold War – Prague has remained an inspiring cultural Mecca of true craftsmanship, architecture, and high-end interior design.

It might be my Czech heritage, but I felt very inspired while visiting Prague. After walking the cobblestone streets and seeing one beautiful piece of hand-blown crystal after another, I decided to embark on another journey – creating my own custom line of Donna Livingston Design crystal glassware.

…Or perhaps it was the sculptural qualities of Vrtbovska Gardens that inspired me. After all, these beautiful gardens were my daily view from the windows of the Beethoven Suite at Aria Hotel, where I stayed for the duration of my trip.

Working drawings of Donna Livingston crystal glassware. Copyright 2012, Donna Livingston Design.

Being an interior designer, and not a crystal designer, I was unaware of how much work was involved in creating such delicate items, not to mention the language barrier. Luckily I had a good colleague and friend, Roman Schneberger, as my right hand man – using his expertise and language translations to coordinate with the local factories. I couldn’t have done it without him!

After my trip, and upon return to Los Angeles, we spent the next few months designing, drawing, measuring, comparing, shipping, and SO much more. We sent prototypes back and forth between Prague and Los Angeles until we had just the right stem thickness, just the right size and cut of the jewel, and just the right height and curve to the bowl of each and every glass –  keeping with the Donna Livingston Design trademark, “It’s all in the details.”

The full DLD Elegant crystal line, complete with the Donna Livingston signature on each base.

After months of hard work and dedication, I finally had my first custom line of authentic Czech hand-blown crystal glassware – the Elegant line. Next up, the Sexy and Contemporary lines!

Working drawings of Sexy and Contemporary DLD glassware. Copyright 2012, Donna Livingston Design.

In remembrance of how much went into the design of this top-of-the-line stemware, I invite you to check out my Facebook page and enter for your chance to win a pair of custom Donna Livingston crystal glasses. To enter the contest you must “like” the DLD Facebook Page and leave a comment about this post. Hurry up, the contest ends on October 26, 2012. Good Luck!