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In an era long ago, back before microwaves and cell phones, the family dinner reigned supreme. And, to set the mood, tables were set with dinnerware. Of course, there was fine china for special occasions, but for daily dinners in the 1940's and 50's, Jadeite dinnerware was popular. Because of the memories associated with these pieces, they've now gained popularity as collector's items.

Here's a few new pieces at Amazon:



Read on to learn a little about the history and to find out what to look for when starting a collection.

History
In the 1960's, McKee mass-produced the first set of Jadeite dinnerware, with a characteristic frilly pattern. Soon after, the Anchor Hocking Company started a new line called Fire-King, which featured heat-resistant plates in a color they called "Jadite." and the product took off. Immediately, they were popular in establishments such as restaurants and hotels, where keeping food warm was a necessity. And soon, these pieces made it into local homes, because many people found them both inexpensive and attractive.

Finding Pieces
Jadeite dinnerware is, admittedly, a challenge to find, which is part of the fun. Because these pieces were inexpensive, they were not meant to be particularly durable, outside of heat-resistance. However, if you can find genuine pieces, they can be quite lucrative; many pieces are selling for $5000 or more these days. Thrift stores are an excellent place to start, as many people donate the contents of an estate after a loved one passes on. Potential collectors should look for a distinctive light green color that is inconsistent between pieces or even on the same dish. While a flawless piece would certainly be desired, some chips and cracks are expected, particularly because it was meant to be an inexpensive option. Pieces made by Anchor Hocking will have the words "Fire King" branded on the back of the dish; similarly, those made by McKee will have the letters "McK" written on the back.

Reproductions and Forgeries
Because Jadite dinnerware has seen an increase in popularity over time, the manufacturers have released subsequent lines throughout the history of the their brands. With Fire King, these will feature a number, such as "2000" along with the brand name. Many original pieces are unmarked, but a true piece of Jadeite from the above manufacturers will be free of any obvious seams or structural deformities, whereas a shoddy reproduction will likely contain those faults. Reproductions are also often a slightly different size than the originals; a quick search online will help you to determine whether the piece you are examining is genuine or not.

Online Auctions
As with many things, online auctions can be an excellent place to find a deal. However, they can also be risky; as mentioned above, forgeries do exist. Before purchasing from an auction, be sure to research the piece and to verify that the seller will guarantee its authenticity. Also by checking the feedback comments you can find out quickly that the seller is fair.   Believe me the Jadeite Dinnerware collectors will not put up with any shady stuff without letting the rest of the community know in the comments and ratings area.

Because of the memories it evokes, collecting Jadeite dinnerware has become popular. Whether you are adding it to your collection or just looking for a unique piece for daily use, these dishes are well worth the search.

Anyone have information on this Jadeite Cake Plate?  If so please leave a comment, it could help David out.  Here's is what is known about the piece.

Hello,

I acquired what looks like an old jadeite cake pedestal with glass bubble from an estate in which the older gentleman said that the cake plate was his mothers.  He thought it was vintage 1930s.  Do you have any idea of when this was made, by whom, and how much it may be worth?

Thanks.

David


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This article originally started as a reference to a couple of Jadeite dinnerware pieces but the more I read a book I picked up by a very knowledgeable author I started finding more and more tidbits of information.

The author had access to the Anchor Hocking Factory as well as catalogs, and old pictures.  This book is a must have for any collector of Fire King.

The pictures are  excellent along with the details of the many offerings.

The name is Gene Florence and this is the book:



The book is much more than just the jadeite section of the Anchor Hocking Fire King line but the jadeite pieces included have pretty good close up views so you can see detail.

The following is just some of the information about the Jade-ite pieces.

Charm is a line made by Anchor Hocking in the early 50's ...one offering from this line was Jade-ite.  The platters and dinner plates are a little scarce.   Some of the cups in this line are marked Fire-King but are a rare find.

Another rare cup is from the Laurel line. 50's to mid 60.

Also the 1700 line has 2 different size bowls and a cup and saucer.  Again for details the book above is the one to look reference.

Sheaves of Wheat is another line in the late 50's offering Bowl, cup, plate and saucer in Jadeite.

Next is the Shell line.

Swirl is another one,

Three Bands (This is not an Anchor Hocking name but more a description, see book for details)

Towards the end of this excellent book Jadeite is discussed.  An interesting fact if Mr. Florence discusses the poor record keeping of Anchor Hocking during the war making it difficult to date Jade-ite ovenware pieces from this era.

One of the many positive reviews by readers of the Gene Florence book talks about how she just likes collecting Fire King to be surrounded by it’s beauty.

Here's a good review of the book:

Video Transcript

this is the summary a banker Hawking's Fire King and mobile identification and Value Guide including early American Prescot in Wexford by Jean Florence FireKing includes not only dinnerware but we must measuring cups mixing bowls Muggs and no gene florence has compiled a second edition of his best-selling book on Fire King loaded with hundreds of new full-color photos vintage catalog pages company materials extensive facts information and values this book has everything collectors expect from Jean Florence America's leading glassware authority 2002 values also be 0 a collector since childhood gene florence is her bf buying and selling glassware turned into a full-time career first writing a book on depression glass florence has gone on tool for many popular glassware titles including books on depression glass Occupied Japan collectibles kitchen glassware very rare glassware forties fifties and 60s glassware elegant glassware stemware glassware pattern identification Anchor Hocking Xfire king glass candlesticks salt and pepper shakers view this book is the perfect companion to a flea market or auction excursion with full-page color plates and concise descriptions even the beginning can make an informed purchase focusing on the height of production nineteen forties seventies the book supplies the reader with a visual wealth the familiar kitchenware and collecting tips this text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title for more hobbies and home book reviews visit www dot home book mix start calm

More Jade-ite Fire King information

Have you been bitten by the Fire King Jadeite collecting bug? It seems to be going around more lately and as a result prices are on the rise. If you don't believe me go into a nearby antique store and inquire on the pieces they have in stock.

And of course if you find one that speaks to you then the price may not be that important but lots of time you may find jadeite dinnerware can be found cheaper online.

Actually the term jadeite or jadeite dishes and other kitchen items cover a broad spectrum of manufactures offerings over the years. Basically Jadeite has come to represent the opaque green dinnerware.

Just about all the manufacturing on original jadeite dinnerware took place in the 30's- 40's and 1950 era. They could be found in industrial settings like restaurants and cafeterias and then you could find dinnerware that was made for the home.

You can have reproductions of the early pieces and then you can find pieces that were never in any of the lines offered by Anchor Hocking, Mckee and others. These pieces that were never in any of the lines are called fantasy pieces.

Here are 3 buying tips to keep in mind while shopping online for Fire King jadeite on such places as eBay.

  • Look or ask to if the piece is stamped with MBM lettering which means Martha by Mail which is the Martha Stewart reproductions and of course is recently made and offered through stores like Target.
  • A good way to spot remakes is how the molds affected the piece. The newer molds usually leave a footprint that is easy to spot like a seam or raised ridge in places the originals didn't have.
  • Just look at the feedback of the seller in the right hand corner of the auction page such as eBay. Former buyers will usually tell you how satisfied they are with their purchases.

Regardless how you find it, collecting jadeite kitchen table setting can be most enjoyable and easy on the pocketbook if you know what to look for.

Here's a couple I found online:

We did not find any matches for your request.

 

I like this video on the Fire King bowls, good shots.

Video Transcript

for sale is for fire king jadeite nesting bowls easter mixing the two smaller balls have different stands for the larger two bowls please be aware that actually small balls are each mark differently large two or more of the same with 6-inch bowl marked oven fire king glass the swirls of course it's that typical wear loafers aged couple of simple scratches and scuffs 7-inch bowl is marked anchor hocking fireking we're making us a 14 and there's more where here reminds its and scratches or temples please make note of that inside the bowl and some more course scratches with white dots inside here little remark some on the outside rim good right there like a branch gold small mark 8-inch bowl is Mark oven fire king we're making us a 19 fireking here is a little bit faded not bad and there's some discoloration right here like a brown marks get in the video right here and right here inside the bubble more the same small where some more white dot here and there and the non-image bowl more like the other one was even fire king where main USA but there's something a spot here in a spot right here i'll describe if these bowls had skin like one layer is missing and was glazed over that goes on about the factory I can't promise that dough but it's hardly noticeable but it is not perfect spot right there to the most beautiful color to him inside you know it's more where these bullets here were bought from a farm estate couple months ago about me and the bolts nine eight seven and six inch nesting bowls thank you

 

I just love these old Life Magazine pictures from the 50's

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It's time to get the girls in for your weekly chit-chat and cup of tea, and you want to make it different, right? Here’s how: get yourself some Jadite fire king dishes. Ok, first things first: what is Jadite (also called Jadeite)?

It’s a kind of fired glass kitchenware that comes with a milky green look, that is translucent and looks great no matter what you use it for. If you want to know just how special it is, for many years it has been a collector’s item with some pieces demanding a pretty high price.

The good thing though, for the most part, Jadite dinnerware is relatively easy on the pocketbook.  This makes it a great item to collect.

There are all kinds of Jadeite kitchenware that you can collect: you can get mugs, you can get plates, you can get dishes, swirl mixing bowls, jadite platters for example.  Anything that you're looking for can be found on sites like eBay as well as local antique shops.

For your get together with the girls, Jadeite mugs and cookie plates will definitely do the trick. The mugs come differentiated by handle size, so that you have a C handle as well as a D handle. There are many different design imprints on the mugs as well – you can choose whatever you want.



Before you buy, do your homework of course. Being such precious and delicate items, there are lesser quality pieces and also units known as fantasy pieces.  These are items that look very charming but were never in the original offerings.  Usually they were created much later by a company trying to enter into the market.

Of course some people even collect the fantasy pieces or newer offering like the Martha Stewart collection.   But these are usually easy to spot by the color or weight and sometimes the patterns themselves.

All in all it’s a fun and exciting adventure collecting Jadeite dishes or any of the dinnerware pieces that you decide to go with.

More Jadeite Dinnerware Info

Even know fire king was originally made to withstand being in the oven before taking to the table. No one that I know actually does this with collectible pieces. It is amazing how a piece that was once a low priced, massed produced item is such a hit with collectors today. Mainly because of so many choices available and complete sets can be still be found without breaking the bank.

And all the stories that are behind some pieces are delightful. Like the cheater mugs that are popular in restaurant ware. The thick rim coffee cups enabled an eating establishment to save on an ounce of coffee. Which may not seem like much but some of these restaurants were huge and this could be a dramatic savings over time.

Whether using a pattern like Alice or Jane Ray the trick seems to be finding these collectibles in good condition. Ones that were not subjected to years of use or dishwashers, etc. And some were only offered for a short time.

Like many early pieces in any collection, sometimes the boxes they were shipped in are worth as much as the plates. In fact I know someone that collects model trains and occasionally the boxes the trains came in are worth more than the train piece. This is usually because this is the first thing discarded after the shipment or purchase. But be on the look out, it's always an added bonus. In some rare case that you find a collection that has the original boxes or printed material, ask the shipper to take as much care in preparing for shipment as they take for your dinnerware.



The intriguing thing for me with fireking jadite is there is so much of it yet undiscovered. Even know the prices lately are up, there’s still a lot of these pieces sitting in attics, on shelves and so on and sometimes someone has forgot they are there or don’t know their real value to collectors.

If you think about it there are places like churches where pieces can be found, sometimes in large quantities. This would make an excellent way for the church to make money in selling to a collector. So if you think about it there are still lots of places where you may find a treasure.

Now some people will say the bottom is about to drop out of for instance jadeite dishes. Well this could be but I have seen where Fire King collecting is catching on in other countries. Just like a lot of other USA made collectibles, these can become a rage in Canada, Japan, anywhere really.

In a totally unrelated collection field such as musical instruments, I’ve seen with my own eyes Japanese collectors buying up hard to find instruments regardless of condition even know they could get an imitation at a fraction of the cost in their own country. They understood that it was only going up in price and they were very aggressive in their searching and buying. Now with international marketplaces like eBay commonplace, it’s very easy for a collection piece to be in demand worldwide, not just in the US.

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