The keys to identifying glass are:
- Handle a lot of glass. I do mean a lot. As in go to glass shows, antique shows, antique malls. Pick up the glass (carefully!) and look at the pattern.
- Have a good memory. Now this one is iffy for me. I have an excellent memory for odd things and I will KNOW, absolutely KNOW that I’ve seen a glass pattern before. But my excellent memory doesn’t always come with an excellent filing system. It may take me a bit to recall WHERE I saw something. At least that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!
- Know your resources. You can amass a library of reference books, and I recommend this if you intend to buy and sell, or you can create a nice online library by saving bookmarks to your favorite glass sites.
Jan posted this cake plate on our Facebook page.
When Jan posted this the little wheels started to turn. I’ve seen this, but where. The design is interesting and stands out, but it doesn’t lend itself to good search terms. I couldn’t think of a good way to describe this design. Pressed flowers? Square with Spray?
Instead of trying to find the design, I decided to search for “cake”. Jan’s piece is a cake plate and there are probably fewer cake plates listed on any given website than flower designs.
Tonight I took time to look through my Glass and Pottery Sellers’ website thinking it was there. The Glass Sellers site is mammoth and not indexed for easy identification. I looked for “cake” but no luck. (I still think it is there – somewhere.)
Then I checked the Chatabout site. The Chatabout site uses key words to retrieve photos, and a general term like “flowers” will retrieve hundreds of pictures. So I searched for “cake” and sure enough, up comes a punch bowl on page 3 that is the exact pattern. I can’t post a link to the photo since Chatabout has blocked linking to individual pages.
The bowl was marked as Indiana, Pattern 371. This bowl had the pattern picked out in color, white flowers and gold sprays. The comment said there is an under plate, dessert plates and our target, the cake plate.
Bingo! Mystery solved.
It pays to have lots of good glass sites, especially if your memory is a bit hit or miss!