Boyd Crystal Art Glass was founded in 1978 by father & son Bernard C. And Bernard F. Boyd, both highly experienced in the glassmaking business. The Boyd factory closed its doors for the last time 2014.
For 36 years, the Boyd name was best known for their colorful animal and character collectibles – with whimsical names like “Debbie the Duck” and “Brian the Bunny” and “Sammy the Squirrel.” Items were produced in a huge range of colors, and each color was run for a few days and never repeated. They never made more than 2000 items in the same color. Many of Boyd’s glass formulas contained special additives like uranium, cadmium or manganese and glow a completely different color under a black light.
Boyd Glass Cats
Boyd Crystal Art Glass made three cat-themed figurines:
• Kitten on a Pillow – (shown above) This was the first animal figurine Boyd made. It was run in a limited series of 46 colors. The first kittens were made in December 1978 in the color “Royalty” (pictured above.)
More about the Kitten on a Pillow
• Miss Cotton the Kitten (right) – Boyd made this mold by removing the “pillow” from the bottom of the kitten mold and renaming it Miss Cotton. The Boyd mark was moved from the pillow to the back right of the cat. The kitten on a pillow figurine was never produced again.
• Cat In A Slipper – has a cat’s head looking out of an elegant slipper. The slipper was pressed in the “diamond and button” pattern.
Boyd never sold “seconds” – all items acquired through their showroom were perfect first quality glassware. (You may see a few air bubbles in a piece – Boyd did not consider this to be a defect.) When the company closed its doors in 2014, the molds were sold but the Boyd mark was removed first – never to be used again.
Boyd Identifying Marks
The Boyd trademark was a “B” in a diamond. Every 5 years a line was added to the outside of it, making it easy to tell when an item was produced. The 6th and 7th five years Boyd s started to add the letters of their name to the inside of the mark, but only got as far as “o” before the business closed.
Pictures of these marks can be seen on the Boyd site – http://www.boydglass.net/our-products/our-trademark.html
For color identification, see our Boyd color list for Miss Cotton and the Kitten on a Pillow. Also, Boyd has pages showing the different colors of chick salts, an item made during their entire time in business, on their web site. This can be helpful in identifying colors for Boyd cats.
In addition to their colorful appeal, Boyd glass cat’s are a perfect collectible if you are short on budget or space – Miss Cotton has a very small “footprint”, and prices are very reasonable – most can generally be purchased for under $50.
Fun facts about Boyd Glass:
- Bernard Boyd (Jr), owner of Boyd Glass, liked to throw chunks of various colors of glass into the tank while workers were pressing glass. These would get slagged into the molten glass and pressed into the next pieces, giving them all a unique appearance.
- Some pieces are signed in gold ink by Bernard Boyd. A few pieces were signed by all 3 Boyds – Bernard, Sue and their son John.
- Sue Boyd had a labelled collection of items they produced – usually the first one or two from a run. Many of these items have since been sold, along with the original handwritten label.
Boyd’s Crystal Art Glass – Boyd’s official site, with mouldlists, marks, colors and more.