Saturday, September 25, 2021

Collecting Glass - Become a Collector

My fascination with glass started in 2000 when we relocated to an area where elegant glass was once made.  We just happened to drive by a "glass show" in our new town and went in. To our delight the room was filled with vendors selling some of the best "elegant" glass ever made in the US.  Most of the glass that I like was made in the 1920's, 30's and 40's.  Vendors are numerous and are all gone but you can still buy the glass at glass shows (the very best source), online and sometimes you can find this stuff in antique malls. I have a "picker" who knows what I like and sends me photos of glass.  He picked out some glass for me at a show in Houston and it is being shipped next week.  My new purchase is all stems - some Cambridge, Fry and a vendor I had never heard of (will share those photos when it gets here). 

Today our collection is quite large and I have a similar collection of glass books.  The books are important to assist in determining the names, vendors, colors, patterns and of course the history.  I have loved every minute of collecting. There is always something new to learn about the glass.  You can date glass by color.  Some colors were not introduced until later and the color often dictates price. There are glass clubs and while the glass shows are dwindling there is one coming up near me (three hours away) next month that I hope to attend.

So how do you go about collecting?  Find companies and patterns that you like.  I tend to migrate to Cambridge (Ohio), Fry (PA), Morgantown (WV), Heisey (OH), and Tiffin (OH).  There are some patterns I collect (Imperial Hunt Scene - Cambridge), bulb boxes (made by Tiffin mostly), and I collect almost exclusively stems (wine, water, cordials) but I have a lot of odd pieces in Imperial Hunt Scene.  Collect what you love.  

My most recent purchase was a Heisey Octagon Ice Bucket which I picked up for $40 at an antique mall. The color is yellow. This is a green one, which I also like.  Mine did not come with tongs.

Here is a Tiffin Bulb Box for sale on Ebay right now.  I have this color already.  I own a black one, this green one, an aqua one and then another green one (a different shade).  They are hard to find.

Another company I love is H.C. Fry.  This glass is harder to find as less of it was made. This is lovely glass for sale right now on Ebay:

My favorite without a doubt is Imperial Hunt Scene by Cambridge. It was only made for a few years and Cambridge made a ton of different sizes so it is difficult to get enough glasses in the same size to set a table. Working towards that goal and I am close. This is a lovely set of tumblers.  I prefer to buy the wine and water glasses.  Most that you see are green, pink or pink and green. Light blue is very rare. I have two black glasses with gold trim (even more rare). Some are etched in gold (drives up the price).

You can also find the pattern on what they call the "Tally Ho blank."  This is a plate in "Tally Ho" which I have not seen before. I don't like the Tally Ho blank as much as it is much heavier but I have 6-8 Tally Ho blank stems that I bought years ago.  They are not as elegant as the colored glass. This is a plate:

Here is a goblet:

You need some lovely crystal to go with all that china when you set your table.  I know people don't do this anymore but I do! Good manners, lovely decor and a fabulous table never go out of style!  Become a collector. And love this Instagram account, @Denvercocktails. They have some great glass. Enjoy!

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