"DESNA, Czech Republic — When the January issue of National Geographic landed in his mailbox last year, Petr Pus nearly fell to the floor. There on the cover and throughout the issue were members of the Kayapo tribe, living far up the Amazon in conditions
Brooklyn, NY (PRWEB) January 19, 2016
Preciosa, the original Bohemian crystal jewelry and giftware company located in the hills of the Czech Republic, is both steeped in tradition while at the same time reflective of modern design and crystal innovation.
Nestled within the heart of the Bohemian countryside, the Czech Republic’s “Crystal Valley” has been one of the centers of European glassmaking since the Middle Ages. As far back as the 14th century, Czech artisans in these hills area have been experimenting with crystal glass, utilizing the valley’s unique natural resources to create authentic crystal jewelry, glassware, decorations and lighting in the heart of the Czech Republic, otherwise known as Crystal Valley.
Preciosa is the luxury brand name for the range of precision-cut crystal glass and related products produced by Preciosa of Jablonec nad Nisou, Czech Republic. Founded in 1948, Preciosa crystal glass products can now be found around the world - sometimes in little known pockets.
On January 12, 2016, Preciosa was featured in the New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/13/world/europe/glass-beads-made-in-czech-village-adorn-bodies-of-the-worlds-tribes.html?_r=0
"DESNA, Czech Republic — When the January issue of National Geographic landed in his mailbox last year, Petr Pus nearly fell to the floor. There on the cover and throughout the issue were members of the Kayapo tribe, living far up the Amazon in conditions more Stone Age than information age, all of them adorned with face paint and a glittering assortment of beads. 'I couldn’t believe it,' said Mr. Pus, the marketing director for Preciosa Ornela, which claims to be the world’s largest producer of high-end glass beads. “They were literally wearing our beads.”
For four and a half centuries since Czech artisans brought back the secrets of glassmaking from the Venetian island of Murano, the narrow and tree-choked valleys of northern Bohemia have been producing a dizzying array of glass beads in all manner of colors, sizes, shapes and decorative flourishes.
And despite passing through history’s threshing machine with a series of conquering rulers, including kings, emperors, freedom fighters, Gestapo thugs and communist dictators, the artisans are still at it.
The Preciosa factory, which produces the beads using a mixture of traditional processes and modern industrial techniques, remains, with 900 workers, the chief employer in this small village of 3,000 people.
And while a flood of cheaper Chinese beads has poured out of Asia over the last five or six years, putting many of Bohemia’s traditional mom-and-pop beadmakers out of business, producers of the higher-end products — known as seed beads and made here by Preciosa and in Japan by a few operations — are experiencing one of their periodic bursts of prosperity.
Desna became a center of Bohemian bead production a little over 150 years ago when Josef Riedel, the descendant of generations of glass traders and manufacturers, built a factory astride a chattering river with the ragged Jizera Mountains looming on all sides. Some of his original buildings are now part of the Preciosa complex.