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Large Victorian milk glass/opaline vases with hand painted decoration

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    Posted 1 year ago

    (645 items)

    I've had these vases for a while, but hadn't got around to posting while looking around my studio/glass display room I thought it was time to give them some airtime at last.
    Vases like these were made in vast amounts, & come in a seemingly endless array of shapes & colours. I guess that many of them were made in Bohemia by various manufacturers, & perhaps some in France as well.
    The first vase is cased pink over white, with a fancy crenelated top rim. It measures 29 cm tall, & has enameled decoration of flowers, foliage, & two blue butterflies. An op shop find just before I moved house in 2018.
    Second vase is made from a single layer of opaque pale grey glass, with enameled decoration of flowers, foliage, & a grey butterfly. It measures 26 cm tall. Found this at a flea market 20 years ago for the not so princely sum of $2.
    Third vase is made from a single layer of opaque white glass, with enameled decoration of flowers & foliage. It measures 35 cm tall. My mother bought this in an antique shop when we went on an "excursion" one day in 2003.
    Fourth vase is made from a single layer of opaque pale grey glass, with enameled decoration of a bird on a tree branch. An op shop find from a few years ago, it measures 34 cm tall. I had no intentions of buying a big piece of glass that day, but how could I leave it on the shelf? It was about $12 I think.
    Anyway, I like this type of simple, yet well - executed Victorian glass. Such pieces bring together the need for a big, practical vase to fill with flowers, & the Victorian love of ornament. I can imagine them gracing mantlepieces & sideboards back in those long lost days, & they still evoke the atmosphere of their heyday - likely 140 years ago now.

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    1. Ivonne Ivonne, 1 year ago

      It's so good you dedicated this post to them.They must have been very popular.Even here they are available very often however their prices aren't so inviting.I didn't pay much attention to them although I could see a good execution and ,undoubtedely,their respectable age.To be honest,I don't know why I was so indifferent to them.
      They look great in your photos.The grouping brings out their beauty.
    2. IronLace IronLace, 1 year ago
      Thanks so much, Ivonne, & I'm pleased to hear that you enjoyed this post. For sure, these vases are quite ubiquitous, & they were clearly exported to every corner of the world. They can be expensive, especially when found in pairs. However, I've been lucky to find some cheaply. I'd always be open to buying others if they are reasonably priced...
    3. sklo42 sklo42, 1 year ago
      An additional pleasure is the enormous variety of shapes!
    4. IronLace IronLace, 1 year ago
      Absolutely! It's a real testament to the inventiveness of the designers/manufacturers that they could come up with so many variations. I have a few more of these vases & they're yet more different shapes. I also enjoy the many colours - hard to see here, but the two pale grey vases are distinctly different - the fourth vase being a "warmer" sort of grey. Two others I have are custard uranium (one without any painting) & another is white with a pale pink lining that shows at the crimped top. I think my favourite of these four is the first one, due to the fancy cut rim, & strawberry pink colour.
    5. kivatinitz kivatinitz, 1 year ago
      congrats wonderful all these opalines
    6. IronLace IronLace, 1 year ago
      Many thanks, kivatinitz!

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