Milk glass is, as its name implies, glass that has been colored (oftentimes white, but not always; it can also be found in pinks, greens, blues and yellows). Originally produced by the great Venetian glass makers in the 1500s, it was also popular in the fin-de-siecle period and during the Great Depression.

 

And while milk glass got its start in Europe, it was readily embraced by Americans. According to Collector's Weekly, "By the early 1900s, milk glass was a symbol of the style and taste of American households enjoying the fruits of the Gilded Age. These privileged individuals filled their homes with milk glass produced by 19th-century U.S. glass manufacturers, including New England Glass Company, Bryce Brothers, Gillinder & Sons, and Atterbury & Company."

 

Milk glass is sturdy and graphic. Usually simply ornamented with designs or bubbles on the exterior, it can be used much the same way regular glass is. My set of milk glass wine glasses found at a flea market are my favorite drinking receptacles (red wine looks smashing against the white glass). Milk glass also looks great against any solid color, which makes it a fun and inexpensive way to decorate a kitchen with useful objects. You can find milk glass from the late 1800s and the Depression era inexpensively today. 

 

This gorgeous bowl is classic milk glass design. On offer from Ybinu on Etsy

This simple bud vase is pretty sans flowers, but would be even lovelier with a bright spring bloom or two bursting from the top. Via Jane Faire on Etsy.

This lion-topped candy dish was made in 1889 and would add a touch of fun to a bedside table, kitchen counter or coffee table. Via 2011_buriedtreasures on Ebay

This plate/cake stand is turned on its side so it's pretty decorative edgework is on full display. Milk glass commonly has lace-like edges. This stand is a Via CountlessCollectibles on Ebay

 

These pretty goblets are perfect for summertime cocktails, or a big glass of juice; colorful liquids always look prettier against the white glass. Via Laural Leaf Farm.

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