Lisa and I have been collecting Depression glass for about six years now. It all started with my mother. She has given us several pieces of old glassware that we knew had some family sentimental value, but we had no interest or energy in determining if they had any real monetary value. A couple months after my father passed away, we took my mother to a large antique show at the Arlington Race Course. Our eyes became wide opened as we walked among the dealers and realized that the glass she gave us had some real value. We're not talking about I-can-retire-now value, but some of the pieces were being sold for more than I would have thought.
The main pieces she gave us is called Cambridge Rosepoint. The plates and glasses were given to her as wedding gifts back in 1949. (It turns out that Rosepoint was a very common glassware gift to give to newly-married couples.) From that pattern and from other miscellaneous patterns, our collection grew. We first went to various antique shows in the Chicago area. Then, we discovered that many organizations specialized in Depression glass. And from that we discovered that many shows occurred in the Chicago area.
We attended a show last week in Northlake and Lisa bought herself a nice glass called "Queen Louise." The glass was pricey, but she did negotiate the dealer down a little bit. It's her birthday gift for this year! She also bought two small glasses.
Although our collection is growing, we are nowhere near some of the collections that the uber-serious collectors have. You can tell who they are. They are the ones carrying notebooks with them and spending a lot of time inspecting each piece of glass. We've also noticed that the demographic trends older. I'm sure many retired people take up the hobby. Many, I'm sure, are building on collections they remember from their childhood. Many, like my mother, inherited pieces from their parents.
It's a fun hobby and one that gives us a lot of enjoyment...together.