Milk glass, if you’re not familiar with it, is an opaque glass that originated in 16th century Venice. The white variety became popular during the Victorian era and looked just like porcelain. It was mass produced during the 1950s and 60s. I bet your grandmother has some!
I've been collecting milk glass for a few years, and now I’m sharing how I use and enjoy the vases in my collection.
I have nine vases—four matching pairs and one odd ball. I almost never find them in pairs, but I don't mind. Hunting and digging is part of the fun in collecting, at least for me. The vases come in many patterns and several different heights. Each of the sets I’ve collected has its own pattern. The openings are different on each set as well and add extra character. Some are flared, some are straight, and the opening on one set is scalloped.
There are two ways I use the vases when I bring the collection out of the display cabinet and into the limelight. The first is to simply line them up like a chorus line in the center of my dining room table and drop in carnations. Nothing hard about that, and it makes for a stunning display. I can usually get almost two weeks out of the flowers. We celebrated our daughter's college graduation recently, and this is how they looked around day 10. Still going strong! Most of the time, I grab the carnations at my local grocery store; however, this time, I stopped by Tuscaloosa Wholesale Flowers on River Road.
Another easy way to use a collection of vases is to bunch them all together on a tray. Collected items make quite a statement when used all together versus spread out here and there throughout the house. A tray of pretties like this would also be perfect for a foyer nestled between two lamps or atop a buffet in a dining room.
I hope I’ve inspired you to look at what you collect and think of a way to use it that will add some fun to your decorating.
Photos: Kathryn Wilkerson
Tuscaloosa native Kathryn Wilkerson is a wife, mom of three, a teacher, and the author of Woodbank Lane – a blog that offers up a variety of different decorating ideas and projects, recipes, and inspiration for living. Follow Kathryn at woodbanklane.com and on Instagram @woodbanklane.