What is Depression Glass?
Depression glass is a type of glassware produced in the United States and Australia during the 1920s and 1930s, known as the Great Depression. It was given away as promotional items at movie theatres, grocery stores, and other businesses, or sold at a low cost to consumers. Despite its name, depression glass is not necessarily associated with feelings of sadness or depression, but rather with the economic hardships of the time period in which it was made.
History of Depression Glass
The history of depression glass dates back to the early 20th century when the United States was experiencing economic turmoil. In an effort to boost sales and attract customers, many businesses began giving away inexpensive glassware as promotional items. These items were often given away with the purchase of a product or service, or as a prize in a contest.
Depression glass was produced in a variety of colours, including pink, green, amber, blue, frosted and crystal, and was made in a range of patterns and styles. Some of the most popular patterns include "Mayfair," "Royal Lace," and "Queen Mary." The glass was made from machine-pressed glass, which was a cheaper method of production compared to hand-blown glass.
Patterns of Depression Glass
One of the most interesting aspects of depression glass is the variety of patterns that were produced. Here are a few of the most popular patterns:
Mayfair is a pattern that features a scalloped edge and a delicate floral design. It was produced in various colours, including pink, green, and amber.
Royal Lace is a pattern with a lace-like design and a scalloped edge. It was produced in a variety of colours, including pink, green, and amber.
Miss America is a pattern that features a starburst design and a scalloped edge. It was produced in various colours, including pink, green, and amber.
Queen Mary is a pattern that features a scalloped edge and a delicate floral design. It was produced in pink and green.
Diana is a pattern with a lace-like design and a scalloped edge. It was produced in pink and green.
Autumn Leaf is a pattern that features a leaf design and a scalloped edge. It was produced in yellow and crystal.
Caring for Depression Glass
If you have depression glass in your collection, it's important to take care of it properly to ensure that it lasts for years to come. Here are a few tips for caring for depression glass:
- Handle the glass gently to avoid chips and cracks.
- Use a soft cloth or sponge to clean the glass, as abrasive materials can scratch the surface.
- Avoid using harsh chemicals or bleach, as these can damage the glass.
- Do not put depression glass in the dishwasher, as the heat and harsh detergents can cause damage.
Storing Depression Glass
Proper storage is also essential to ensure that your depression glass stays in good condition. Here are a few tips for storing depression glass:
- Keep the glass away from direct sunlight and heat sources.
- Store the glass in a dry place to prevent moisture damage.
- Use acid-free tissue paper or bubble wrap to protect the glass when storing it.
- Avoid stacking the glass, as this can cause chips and cracks. Instead, store each piece separately or use dividers to keep them separated.
Depression glass is a beautiful and collectible piece of history. By following these tips for caring for and storing your depression glass, you can ensure that it stays in good condition for years to come.