Vintage Glass Dinnerware Shapes, Sizes & Descriptions

Vintage Glass Tableware

Whether you are buying or selling vintage glass tableware, it’s important that you know what the product is actually called. Just like anything, all these little pieces have names and if you’re not calling it the right thing, the person you are dealing with may be disappointed.


I recommend someone who is new to collecting vintage glass tableware to read and learn the terms below. I’m not claiming to be an expert, but I’m certainly an enthusiast. If you have any recommendations please leave them in the comments below.

You may notice a fair amount of pieces that don’t exist anymore. There’s no doubt the dinner setup was more formal in the early-1900s than it is today.

Let’s dig in, shall we?

Vintage Glass Tableware Shapes, Sizes, Names & Descriptions

After-dinner cup: demitasse, smaller than a standard cup

Baker: uncovered, oval vegetable bowl

Berry Bowl: part of a set; serving bowl, 6-8″ in diameter, also single bowls, 3-4″ in diameter

Berry set: a set with one 8-9″ serving bowl and three 4″ individual bowls

Bottom’s up: a drinking glass with a rounded bottom, often made with the figure of a woman

Butter dish: covered, round or rectangle; “quarter-pound dish” is rectangular and holds 1/4 lb. stick of butter

Casserole: covered, round vegetable bowl, typically heat-resistant

Celery dish: oval platter or shallow dish, typically 11-12″ long

Compote: dish with stem and foot

Console (or centerpiece): low oval bowl, typically 12″ long, used on a long table with matching candlesticks

Coupe soup: shallow pottery bowl, typically 7-8″ in diameter

Cream soup: bowl with 2 handles, 4 1/2″ in diameter, sometimes covered with underplate

Cup and saucer: conventional size for tea and coffee

Demitasse: after-dinner coffee cup, smaller than a cup

Drip-o-later (or dripper): a piece that lies between the cover and coffeepot. Hot water is poured in through the top to make the coffee.

Fast stand: an underplate that is attached to a gravy boat

Fluted (or French baker): uncovered, oval vegetable bowl, straight sides, comes in both large and small sizes

Goblet: a drinking glass with stem and foot

Gravy boat (or sauce boat): oval dish with 1 or 2 spouts, sometimes with handle and usually with underplate

Grill plate: a round, three-section plate used to serve meat and vegetables

Ice lip: specially curved lip of a pitcher to hold ice cubes

Ivy ball: a round glass vase, typically with stem and foot

Nappy: square or round, flat-bottomed dish with sloped sides, typically 6″ across

Onion soup (or lug soup): pottery bowl with tabs instead of open handles

Pickle dish: small oval platter or shallow dish, typically 9″ long

Plate: square or round, for serving

Reamer: a dish and pointed-top cone used to juice citrus fruits

Refrigerator sets (or leftover sets): pottery or glass dishes used for storage

Sandwich server: large plate, typically with upright handle in the center

Tidbit: serving dish, sometimes 2 or 3 layers with upright handle

Tilt jug: a pitcher with a ball-shaped body and angled neck

Tumble-up: a glass bottle with a small tumbler turned upside-down over the neck to serve as a cover and a drinking glass

Tumbler: a drinking glass, typically with a flat base, sometimes footed, no stem

Plate Sizes & Names

Dessert plate: 6 inches
Bread plate: 7 inches
Salad plate: 7.5 inches
Luncheon plate: 8-9 inches
Breakfast plate: 9 inches
Dinner plate: 10 inches
Grill plate: 10.5 inches, divided into three sections
Sandwich plate: 11-13 inches, usually with 2 handles
Chop plate: 13 inches

Goblet Sizes & Names

Cordial goblet: 1-1.5 oz.
Wine goblet: 2-2.5 oz.
Cocktail goblet: 3-4 oz.
Parfait goblet: 5 oz., with short stem and tall, narrow bowl
Claret goblet: 5 oz.
Sherbet goblet: 5-6 oz., with short stem and broad bowl
Champagne goblet: 5-6 oz., with tall stem and broad bowl
Water goblet: 8-10 oz.

Tumbler Sizes & Names

Whiskey or shot tumbler: 1.5-3 oz., 2-2.5″
Juice tumbler: 4-7 oz., 3.75-4.5″, footed
Old Fashioned tumbler: 8 oz., 2.5″
Water tumbler: 9-10 oz., 4-5.5″, footed
Iced tea tumbler: 12-16 oz., 5.5-6″, footed


About Paul Phipps

Paul loves history. He literally read the entire 1987 World Book Encyclopedia when he was 23 years old. His expertise ranges across the entire spectrum of pop culture. He specializes in vintage clothing, sports collectibles, vinyl records and tin toys.

2 thoughts on “Vintage Glass Dinnerware Shapes, Sizes & Descriptions

  1. Claire

    I have 4 3”x1” circular plate/dish with the sides being v-shaped scallop edging on top. Possibly depression glass. What would this size be called & what is it used for?


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