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West Virginia brands come together in Greenbrier County

June 11, 2005

 

by DEBBIE SCHWARZ SIMPSON

The Register-Herald Newspaper, Beckly, WV


WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS - Fenton Portfolio for The Greenbrier has opened its doors on Alabama Row at the world-famed resort.

 

Fenton is the 34th specialty shop at The Greenbrier, according to Steve Baldwin, the resort's director of retail operations.

 

"We're extremely happy to be able to share in the excitement of Fenton's 100th year," said Baldwin. "Any time we can partner with a West Virginia company, it is good for both of us," he stressed.

 

"It's two West Virginia 'brands' coming together," notes Nancy G. Fenton, design director for the Fenton Art Glass Co. based in Williamstown.

 

"Both have long histories and value artistry," she said in comparing Fenton and The Greenbrier.

 

Fenton Portfolio for The Greenbrier is located just a stone's throw from the President's Cottage Museum, which houses the resort's long and storied history.

 

"We are carrying some of everything," points out Fenton. She said the resort shop also will showcase exclusive pieces.

 

"We do more colors and more unique colors than any other glass factory," maintains Fenton. "We try to stay up on the color trends."

 

Fenton stressed that the family-owned business has attempted to save the art glass heritage. She explains Fenton's unique method of creating glass colors from pure gold and silver is the same as it was a century ago.

 

The diversity of the art glass which is turned out at the company's factory in Wood County is evident at the Fenton shop at the resort.

 

"They have a satin finish and are hand-painted," says Fenton of the blackart glass showcased in a white cupboard. "They are part of our regular 2005 line," she added.

 

A square vase in shimmering Marigold iridescence rests on a lighted column filled with crystal and amber glass and is part of the Generations Collection for the Centennial Year while another cabinet brims with cameo glass signed by Richard Delaney of Vienna and with one-of-a-kind blown glass created by Dave Fetty of Williamstown.

 

"We have a number of whimsical pieces," says Sonja Cole, manager of Fenton Portfolio for The Greenbrier.

 

She singles out the figurines, bells and trinket boxes which are right at home among the vases, baskets and rose bowls which are best sellers.

 

Exclusive to the resort is a designer hat in pink and green with a rhododendron design, notes Cole, a native of White Sulphur Springs.

 

"Each handpainted piece is signed by the artist. It has its own decorative touch that identifies it with the artist," Cole added.

 

Cole says that signings of the art glass at Fenton Portfolio for The Greenbrier already have been scheduled for July and October.

 

"A member of the Fenton family will be here to do the signings," she said.

 

According to Nancy Fenton, the Fenton Art Glass Co., a household name worldwide in the art glass industry has from 130-140 retail outlets in West Virginia as well as in numerous state parks.
 

 

 

 

 

 

   
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