American designer Deborah Ehrlich was born in Passaic, New Jersey in 1966. In 1988, she earned a Bachelor in Anthropology from Barnard College before moving to Ft. Thomas, Kentucky to study under master sculptor Mike Skop. In 1990, she began traveling through Europe; while abroad, she helped restore the stained glass of St. Stephan’s Cathedral in Vienna and studied design at the Danish Design School in Copenhagen, where she was introduced to blown-glass production. She also created large-scale installations from local materials in Provence. She returned to New York in 1998 and produced her first glass—a narrow, stemless champagne flute inspired by the ones she’d used in France— and found a Swedish glassblower to manufacture four glasses for her own private use. Upon seeing one of the glasses, the Japanese department store Takashimaya immediately placed an order, and thus Ehrlich founded her own company.
Today, she continues to work with that same Swedish glassblower. Focusing primarily on simple, crystal glassware, Ehrlich’s work combines contemporary forms and traditional techniques: She sketches her designs in her Hudson Valley studio, which are then hand blown and produced by the master craftsmen in Sweden. Ehrlich works out of an 18th-century stone farmhouse in Accord, New York.