Wednesday, May 11, 2011

My New Collection Obsession

My latest obsession is collecting glass.  It must be all the trips to Second Hand Rose in Minden - I'm going to blame Milly.

One of the things Steve and I both love about going to visit Milly is that she knows so much about antiques that we always learn something.  She's not just an antique shop owner, but she's highly educated and is also an experienced appraiser.  She knows her stuff.  As a result, she's always teaching us something and telling us about the history of this piece or that.   Long time readers might remember when I posted about the Vaseline glass candlesticks - I had no idea about such things, about depression glass, about vaseline glass, about any of that.  I knew a little about cut crystal because my mom has some treasured antique cut crystal pieces that we were always forbidden to touch.

I've recently bought a couple of good books and have begun researching and learning about America's early glass industry.  It's actually a fascinating story with some really interesting characters.  The whole process of making glass and the development of the industry itself fascinates me.  Of course, the difficult part is that glass wasn't marked like silver was, so determining the maker of a piece is sometimes a challenge, but I'm finding that is part of the fun!

Here's a peek into my growing collection and new obsession.  My grandmother left a lot of Fostoria that I inherited with this house.  It's the American pattern; it's by no means complete, but I have lots of ...I'm going to call them salad plates.  I have a handful of tumblers and a couple of  trays.  I've always loved them.  Here's a stock photo (not mine):

I also have this console bowl.  I haven't totally nailed down the pattern yet, but I think it's from the Indiana Glass Company.  I've found a couple like this one with the fleur de lis but the etching on the examples I've found is more floral.  This one is more of a wheat or frond pattern:

Half the fun of glass collecting is identifying the pattern, I think, so I'll eventually find this one.  The bowl is rather large, about 12 inches across.  There's a matching two light candle holder, too:
If my grandmother had any other pieces in this pattern, I haven't found them.  

She also had four of these Fostoria "June" goblets which I adore - the glass is just paper thin.  This is an internet photo:

That's about the extent of grandmother's glass except for a few assorted glass candlesticks of various heights and styles which I have amassed on my mantle.

So I hit a few estate sales last weekend to add to my collection.  I decided I wanted to find some depression glass pieces in colors.  I bought this great book by Cathy and Gene Florence which is filled with color photos of all the patterns and styles of depression glass.  I fell in love with a couple of patterns, but of course, I picked the hard to find, most expensive ones. One, the Tea Room pattern, pictured above, I love but I don't have any of yet.

Depression glass was often given away in boxes of cereal or oatmeal, in flour sacks, as promotional gifts at theaters, or sold for a few cents a piece during the period from about 1928 - 1940.  There was also "Elegant glass" which was a bit costlier but of higher quality.  That's the category grandmother's Fostoria falls into.

Anyway, I hit the estate sales and bought a few pieces this weekend.  I didn't really know if I was getting anything valuable or even that was truly depression glass, but I picked up some things I liked, which I think is the way to go.  Why buy something you hate?

At my first stop I got this bowl which I have now identified as a Fenton glass bird bowl:

I paid $12.00 for it and it's about $25 on ebay.  Not bad for a rookie, I guess.  I like it, though.  I like the green color and I like the detail on it.
Next stop - I picked up this amethyst candlestick for $2.00.  Don't have any idea who made it or even if it's old, but I love the color:

It's living on the mantle now with the others (which are all clear, crystal in color).
My next stop resulted in this cute Tiara glass butter tray for $.50.  For fifty cents, it's pretty cute.  That's The Last Supper depicted on there.  

It's pretty small - about six or eight inches long.  Cute.

Then I went back to estate sale number one because I couldn't quit thinking about this cute creamer, so I had to go back and get it.  Love the little "dolphin" feet:

Some research on the internet later told me it's made by Heisey Glass and is the Rosalie pattern.  I got it for $9.00 and it's about $41 at

Again, not bad for a rookie!  I liked it, though.  
A couple of unidentified pieces followed...this bowl I got for a couple of bucks:

and this tray for $4:

The bowl is small - about five inches across, and the tray is about ten inches long.  Not big.  I'll research them and see if they fit into any pattern anywhere, but I liked them.

Hey, Milly?  If you're reading this?  Find a nice antique china cabinet for me, will ya?  I think I'm going to need one.


MikeAT said...

My mom collects Depression Glass...Miss America in pink. I have a bowl like the one you pictured. I think, think that it's American Press Cut....I use the bowl all the time! Beth (ACopsWatch's wife!)

Pat Austin said...

Yay Beth! I'll check that out and see if it's the same! I love the pink glass and it fits with the fine Haviland china I have. I love the green too, but so far, not a fan if the yellow. I might pick up some red pieces to go with my Christmas china. A china cabinet is a must. Quickly.

Pat Austin said...

@Beth: Oh and by the way, we are
Planning a Natchitoches trip in June. Get on your bikes and meet us there!