I've recently become a collector of milk glass items after decades of not even really noticing its existence. I'm not sure why I find it so appealing now. Perhaps it's the pure, clean whiteness of it or the seemingly endless shapes it is blown or pressed into.
Milk glass was first made in Venice in the 16th century in a variety of colors, including white. White is made by adding tin dioxide or bone ash to the glass to produce the milky white opague glass known as "opal glass".
During the Depression Era, it grew in popularity because of its ability to be produced cheaply yet look elegant.
This type of glass has been made into items such as decorative dinnerware, lamps, vases, candy dishes and jewelry. Notable manufacturers include the Fenton Glass Company, Imperial Glass Company and Westmoreland Glass Company, just to name a few.
For collectors, the original milk glass pieces of the Depression Era fetch about the same price as the "reproduction" pieces. It's becoming increasingly popular for wedding decorating, as well as home decor.
I think it's popularity is due to its ability to look vintage and modern at the same time. It's equally at home in the country cottage and the suburbia mansion and it's available at a price most people can afford.
Do you have a favorite milk glass item?