Depression Glass Patterns
Collectors of Depression Glass find not only its beautiful
colors fascinating, but its patterns, as well. With many glass
producers making this type of glass, as you can imagine, many
patterns resulted, creating a wide array of pretty, practical,
and inexpensive glassware affordable to every American household
in that lean era of history and making Depression Glass one of
the most collectible items today.
Of the many glass manufacturers that produced Depression
Glass, seven of them became major players in the field, creating
a total of 92 designs. Below you'll find some history, some
trivia, some folklore, and some interesting characteristics about
several of these designs.
This Depression Glass design, sometimes referred to as
Ballerina or Dancing Girl, gets its name from the tiny dancer
found on all its pieces. Some claim the Hocking Glass Company
that manufactured Cameo glass created the pattern to honor the
legendary modern dancer of the 1920s, Isadora Duncan, who
tragically died when her long trailing scarf, of which she'd made
her personal trademark, choked her to death when it wrapped
around the wheel of her moving Bugatti roadster.
Duncan died in 1927, and the Cameo pattern came into being in
1930, continuing to be produced until 1934, so the story could
very well be true. Regardless of the inspiration for this pattern
of Depression Glass, it continues as a much sought-after design.
Hocking made most Cameo glass in green, but pink, yellow, and -
more rarely - crystal, which can occasionally still be found.
First produced in 1923, the Avocado or "Sweet Pear" pattern
claims its fame for being the very first 'true' Depression Glass
design. Made by the Indiana Glass Company, Avocado pieces in the
form of pitchers prove to be the most difficult to find, possibly
because of this pattern's age. Indiana continued manufacturing
Avocado for 10 years, until the company retired this Art
Nouveau-type design in 1933.
Pattern: Royal Lace
The Hazel-Atlas Glass Company began producing Royal Lace
during 1934 as a set consisting of 28 pieces. Today, Royal Lace
holds the honor of being some of the costliest Depression glass
that collectors covet. Hazel-Atlas manufactured Royal Lace in
crystal (clear) and in five colors: green, yellow, pink, blue,
and burgundy. The most desirable color consistently proves to be
the blue, called Ritz Blue by the company, which actually came
about as an economic accident.
When General Mills ended a deal with Hazel-Atlas' using
blue-colored glass in a Shirley Temple promotional campaign in
1936, Hazel-Atlas simply poured the leftover vats of molten blue
glass into its existing Royal Lace molds to avoid wasting it. An
instant success resulted. Blue Royal Lace Depression Glass reigns
to this day as 1 of the most sought after and is now 1 of the
most expensive of all the other Depression Glass patterns.
These samplings of interesting Depression Glass trivia make
collecting it all that more appealing. After all, how many other
pieces of glassware can be found in people's homes that come with
a ready-made story - at least those people in the median income
range (We're not talking Tiffany or Lalique here!)? And these
have been gleaned from a mere sampling of the plethora of
Depression Glass designs that have survived over the years.
Imagine what stories can be found!
The next time you gaze at that lovely piece of Depression
glass resting in the window of your favorite antique dealer or -
if you're lucky - sitting on a dusty shelf at a flea market just
waiting for you to discover it, remember: Whatever pattern it is,
a good chance exists that it, too, will have a fascinating
So take a chance. Buy it!
Until next time,
If you enjoyed this article by Murray Hughes, then visit
Glass Patterns now and enrol in the free Depression Glass
course "The 5 Essential Steps To Becoming A Depression Glass
Collector" For AOL users: Depression
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