Molds (or moulds, as it is also spelled) were popular during the Victorian Era, when dishes such as savory chicken-and-ham raised pie, sherry-infused calf’s-feet jelly, and sweet, palate-cleansing blancmange were all the rage. Copper molds were the preference of well-heeled cooks; tin molds in shapes with names like Solomon’s Temple were found in humbler kitchens.

For collectors, copper molds are perhaps the most appealing. When not in use, these handsome, stamped, and castellated containers make wonderful decorative objects for the kitchen, either on a high plate shelf or just hung on a wall. Copper molds in shapes ranging from fish to turtles to lions were often tinned on the inside and designed for everything from jellies to cakes.

Tin was even more versatile. Madelines, teacakes, and petit fours were baked in small, stamped-tin “patty pans,” while tinned molds with removable sides were used for raised pies. Brioche molds with fluted sides are still used today, as are pudding molds, which feature lids that snap tight to keep heat in and moisture out during steaming.

Mid-19th-century cooks also used ceramic molds, such as those made out of Wedgwood creamware or a more common form of earthenware known as ironstone, which was glazed a gleaming white and produced by numerous Staffordshire potteries. In the early 20th century, Joseph Bourne & Son was known for a variation of this kitchenware called Denbyware.

Another form of ceramic mold was designed for cookies and gingerbread. To use these molds, a cook would press dough into the top of the mold, whose inside would leave an impression of a gingerbread man or perhaps Santa Claus on the outside of the cookie. The practice was so prevalent during the holidays that molds became synonymous with Christmas and the tasty tradition of baking Christmas cookies. Those who celebrate Easter also embraced molds, especially when it was time to make mass quantities of homemade chocolate bunnies and eggs.

In the United States, one of the biggest proponents of the mold was Jell-O, which gave away small aluminum molds with their brand stamped into the bottom to encourage cooks to use its products. At the heavier end of the mold spectrum was Griswold, whose cast-iron cake molds included depictions of Santa, the Easter bunny, and a peaceful lamb. In between were thinner metal molds whose mottled gray and cobalt surfaces are known as graniteware. These were used for making everything from cakes to steamed puddings.

Finally, wooden molds were used to produce maple-sugar candies. Classic shapes included animals like horses and beavers, as well as moons and hearts. The molds typically consisted of two mirror-image sides that had been hand carved. The sides would be pegged tightly together, filled from the bottom, and then left to set up before being carefully pried apart.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Feeding America

Feeding America

This archive of 76 influential American cookbooks from the late 1700s to early 1900s, assembled by the Michigan St… [read review or visit site]

Tupper Diva

Tupper Diva

Kristian McManus’ fresh, airtight collection of Tupperware catalogs and related ephemera from the 1950s and 6… [read review or visit site]



Most watched eBay auctions    

Favorite Piqua No. 10 Cast Iron Skillet - (old "erie" Griswold Mold)Vintage Griswold Cast Iron Rabbit Cake Mold, # 862 & # 863 Matching Halves E Dehillerin Paris Copper Jelly, Desert Mold Tin Lined! Awesome!!!! No ReserveA Victorian Benham & Froud Copper Jelly Mould C1860/80Vintage Griswold Mfg Co Cast Iron Cake Mold 2 Parts: 863 & 862Large Metal Rabbit Mold Easter Bunny Chocolate AntiqueVtg Wax Springerle Butter Mold Cookie Press Germany 20 Block Stamp Picture Antique Copper Pudding/jelly Mold Benham Froud Style Castellated French/englishBrown Bag Cookie Art 2001 Scottie Dog Mold With Recipe Book NewAntique Benham & Froud Copper Jelly, Pudding & Cake Mold Mould! Rare No ReserveCast Iron Rabbit Mold By Griswold Manf .Lodge Vintage 1 Notch Cast Iron Deep Skillet Chicken Fryer + Lid Mold Mark 1930sAnton Reiche Metal Chocolate Mold Bunny RabbitAntique Chocolate Mold - Elephant, Rotterdam Steel Metal SmallBlossom Heart Brown Bag Cookie Art Ceramic Cookie Mold Nwt 2002Antique Clear Toy Cast Candy MoldAntique Anton Reiche American Indian Chief In Canoe Chocolate Mold #32472 39Antique Griswold Cast Iron Corn Bread Mold Erie Pa Kitchen ToolAntique Clear Toy Cast Candy MoldAntique Round 9 - 10 Inch Metal German Bundt Cake Mold Mould Pan VintageAntique/vintage Unmarked Cast Iron Bundt Cake Pan Cake Mold Antique Vintage German Rabbit Driving Race Car Chocolate Mold # 3005 2part MetalAntique Huge Rabbits Musical Band Easter Egg W/ Drum, Bunnies Chocolate Mold Vintage Rabbit On Mushroom Cane Basket Chocolate Mold # 3101 10" Tall Metal 2ptRosette IronsWilton Ninja Turtle Cake Mold From 1989Rare Brown Bag Teacup Cut-apart Cookie Paper Chocolate Mold - Ex Cond. Crude 18th Century Colonial Gentleman Redware Pudding Mold Aafa Folk Art GlazedVtg Tin Little Red Riding Hood Chocolate Mold Germany 1 Side 4 1/4" X 6 1/4"Vintage/antique Eppelsheimer Pewter Ice Cream/butter Mould #507 MoldVintage Antique Chocolate Mould MoldAntique Dresden Metal Chocolate Candy Mold Anton Reiche Tin Soldier GermanyAntique Victorian Copper Jelly, Pudding, Cake Mold Mould. Benham & Froud StyleAntique Grinning Smiling Cat Chocolate Mold # 8355 2 Part Metal 7" Tall2 Vintage Swiss Copper Mold Tin Lined Bee & Lady Bug Butter Sugar Chocolate MoldGriswold # 1 & # 2 Patty Mold Sets In BoxesVintage Large Copper Tin Lined Cake/jelly Mold Marked 13 20Vintage Anton Reiche 4 Leaf Clover + 30 Mold Chocolate Mold # 4357-4368 MetalVintage "goldie And The Three Bears"? Chocolate Mold Germany 4 1/4" X 6 1/4"Superb Vintage Copper Fish Mold, Signed By Artist Michael Bonne, 1989Vintage Lodge Maid Of Honor Cast Iron Skillet 4 Notch Hr Circa 1950’s Mold MarkVintage Chocolate Mold/ Baby On The PotVintage Chicken Rooster Cookie Jar Atlantic MoldClear Toy Candy MoldRare Antique Chocolate Mold To My Valentine Makes 6 Large Hearts 1860-1890Antique Letang Fils Sitting Hen With 3 Chicks Chocolate Mold #4311 2 Part MetalVintage Copper Cake/jello/pudding Mold, Tin Lined-cookware Or DecorBrown Bag Cookie Art Shortbread ~hearts & Flowers ~ Pan Mold Bakeware 1988 Vintage Set Of 6 Miniature Copper Decorative 1 ¾” Oval Molds With Hanging RingsVintage Early Wooden Butter Mold Press Stamp - Leaf / Foilage / FernClear Toy Candy MoldVintage T.c. Weygandt Valentine Chocolate MoldVintage Set Of 2 Metal Madeleine Madeline Shell Cookie Tin Molds - French Tea Lamb Cake MoldTeenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Cake Mold By WiltonSmall Metal Standing Rabbit Mold Chocolate Antique Easter BunnyVintage Eppelsheimer Pewter Ice Cream/butter Mould 479 Passenger Train Car Mold German Springerle Cookie Press Mold Wooden 6 Shapes & 6 Different Pictures1988 Vintage The Barnyard By John Wright Cast Iron Farm Animals MoldsLot 12 Vintage Jello Dessert Mini Bundt Swirl Cake Tins Molds