When was that Pyrex pattern or piece introduced?
Part One: 1940s - 1950s
Dates determined from print advertisements and catalogues, from 1945 to the 1980s. Jump to: 1950s ... 1960s ... 1970s ... 1980s
Multi-colour bowls (1945)
This set is the first consumer product to be made from opal Pyrex, and full-scale production began in September 1945. At some point before 1949, the 404 became available for individual purchase in yellow, plus a new colour, red.
Red 402s & 404s of earlier manufacture are a lighter orange-red colour, but this evolved to a darker true red shade. The other three colours also varied a bit over the lifespan of this set. Multi-colour bowls in blue, red, green & yellow and the single red 404 were marketed until 1968.
The shape of 400-series bowls was altered about five years after their debut. Older examples have a highly-arching well-defined foot, and the bottoms of newer ones are much more flat. Once this new shape was established it remained practically unchanged for decades.
Markings vary a lot on the oldest bowl sets, and through the first few years backstamps accumulated more details, adding the model number, the "Made in U.S.A." statement, and the capacity. But the most consistent features of 400-series bowls from the 1940s are the substantial foot on the bottom and the orange-red colour of the 402.
Red 404s: The foot of the older bowl (left) is more pronounced. A flat bottom (right) is the more typical shape for 400-series bowls. The colour difference is visible too.
From 1945 to 1950, advertisements rated the capacities of 400-series bowls at 4 Qt, 2¼ Qt, 1¼ Qt, 1 pt (or ½ Qt). Following this was a period where their volumes were not mentioned at all, then beginning in 1953 they were described as 4 Qt, 2½ Qt, 1½ Qt, 1½ pt. For 401s, 402s & 403s, it seems like a 1 cup increase, but their actual sizes had not changed. Older thicker bowls and newer thinner bowls both hold the larger quantities equally well, filled to the very top.
Multi-colour refrigerator set (1948)
This set includes two red 501s (1½ cup), one blue 502 (1½ pint), and one yellow 503 (1½ Qt). Although it was emphasized that the dishes were suitable for absolutely any purpose, the 502 was ideally designed to hold one pound of butter and to be held easily in an average woman's hand. Multi-colour refrigerator sets remained in production into the 1960s. Clear 501s & 502s were sold individually, beginning about 1949 and remaining for only a few years.
Red Tulip: Decorated Clear Pyrex (1948)
Clear Pyrex items with a red & green tulip design on a frosted band were introduced in September 1948. The product line was still offered during 1949, but otherwise this unique method of decoration seems to be short-lived. In advertising it was described as: "… so inexpensive and practical. Decorated with frosty borders of dainty red tulip and green leaf designs, it will add a cheery note to any kitchen." The frosted/etched surface allows the coloured stain to adhere better to the glass.
Red Tulip was available on: three round casseroles with pointy knob-top lids (022/622, 023/623, 024/624); two custard cups (462 & 465); square cake pan (222); loaf pan (212); rectangular utility dish (232); rimmed nesting bowl set (322, 323, 325). Visit the Corning Museum of Glass for a photo of a Red Tulip 023/623.
Hostess sets: Red, Yellow (1949)
Hostess bowls are characterized by their square circumference and round base. Introduced summer 1949, a large Hostess set comprised one 2½ Qt serving bowl and four 12 oz ramekins. The small set did not debut until 1950, with one 1½ Qt serving bowl and four 7 oz ramekins, and this set generally included a lid.
(Photo: Red 407 (7 oz); Yellow 410 (12 oz); Yellow 015 (1½ Qt), with 515 lid; Red 025 (2½ Qt).)
All four sizes were sold individually too, and serving bowls could be purchased with or without lids. With a lid, they were called casseroles.
Red & Yellow Hostess bowls were discontinued autumn 1953, but the shape was resurrected spring 1959 for a turquoise chip & dip set. Rose-coloured 2½ Qt Hostess bowls with lids also exist, but their exact age and official name are uncertain. The colour is different from the usual Pink or Flamingo products.
Princess dinnerware (1952)
Made of opal Pyrex, Princess dinnerware was available during 1952 & 1953. A deeply embossed ripple design on the rim gives it a thin and delicate appearance. One advertisement called it a "gadroon edge". The brand name on the backstamp is Corning, and most pieces are also marked with "Toughened ... Heat-Resistant" and a five-pointed crown logo.
Princess dinnerware, small side plates.
Princess was sold in 20-piece sets with four place settings, including: dinner plate, side plate, cup & saucer, soup/cereal bowl. These five pieces plus a dessert bowl could be purchased in open stock too.
(Photo: Princess cup & saucer.)
This product is closely related to tableware produced in Cremax and Monax during the late 1930s & early 1940s. The shape & size of Princess plates, bowls and saucers is borrowed from Oxford and the plain ribbed "piecrust" pattern, but Princess cups are a new design. Some pieces carry no brand name at all, and are marked only with concentric rings and "Made in U.S.A.", just as Cremax and Monax products had been.
Lime, Flamingo bakeware (1952)
First appearing autumn 1952, these solid-coloured pieces include: 023 & 024 round casseroles, 209/909 pie plates, 221 cake pan, 222 square pan, and 232 rectangular pan. Some items did not arrive until 1954, namely: 080 round casserole, 212/213 loaf pans, 231 rectangular pan. Lime bakeware was discontinued in 1956 and Flamingo bakeware disappeared about 1957.
Lime 212 loaf pan, Flamingo 221 cake pan. During the 1950s, a 212 was wider and more shallow than a 213, but with the same capacity.
Heinz Forest Green (1953)
A unique rectangular baking dish with a 1¾ Qt capacity was "designed exclusively for H.J. Heinz Co." and offered in an autumn 1953 promotion. By purchasing three cans of Heinz products, the baking dish could be obtained for an additional 79¢ at participating grocery stores. The colour was described as "soft forest green", and it seems to match the Heinz baked beans label. The model number is 507, and it was sold without a lid. Although some lids do exist for this size, they are not regular production items.
Lime, Flamingo, Turquoise, Dove Grey Dinnerware (1953)
Regency Green, Royal Burgundy Dinnerware (1954)
Lime, Flamingo, Turquoise and Dove Grey were packaged into 16-piece services for four, usually with 10" dinner plates, 8¼" luncheon plates, cups and saucers. Some sets came with 6¾" side plates rather than luncheon plates. More pieces were available in open stock: dessert bowls, soup/cereal bowls, cream & sugar set, serving bowl, and 12½" round platter. All four colours could be purchased with or without gold trim.
Gold-trimmed Regency Green and Royal Burgundy were initially sold in 34-piece sets, containing six place settings and four serving pieces. Except for soup/cereal bowls and luncheon plates, all sizes & shapes were provided in this boxed set. Open stock items and 16-piece sets eventually would be offered in these colours too.
Turquoise, Flamingo, Lime, Dove Grey, Regency Green, and Royal Burgundy, plus cream & sugar set, serving bowl, and round platter. Image from 1955 advertisement.
On packaging and in literature, the latter two sometimes were named Forest Green and Royal Scarlet, and two of the earlier colours were referred to as Flamingo Red and Turquoise Blue at times. Flamingo, Dove Grey and Turquoise, without gold trim, remained in production into the early 1960s, while the other colours and trim options were discontinued about 1957.
Pyrex Dinnerware: Flamingo soup/cereal bowl, Lime cup & saucer, Turquoise side plate, Dove Grey dinner plate. Gold trim also available.
Desert Dawn bakeware: Desert Pink, Desert Yellow (1955)
These solid-coloured pieces with a speckle effect include: 024 round casserole, 213 loaf pan, 209 pie plate, 221 cake pan, 222 square pan, and 231 & 232 rectangular pans. Individually, the two colour choices were named Desert Pink and Desert Yellow, and both were available about two years.
Desert Yellow 231 (1½ Qt) rectangular utility pan.
Pink bowls & bakeware (1956)
Turquoise bowls & bakeware (1956)
These solid-coloured pieces include: 023 & 024 round casseroles, 213 loaf pan, 209 pie plate, 221 cake pan, 222 square pan, 231 & 232 rectangular pans, 300-series & 400-series nesting bowl sets, and 500-series refrigerator sets. The 300-series bowl set and 024 casserole remained into the early 1960s, and the other shapes were dropped earlier.
Pale Yellow bakeware (1956)
These solid-coloured pieces include: 023 & 024 round casseroles, 213 loaf pan, 209 pie plate, 221 cake pan, 222 square pan, and 231 & 232 rectangular pans. The 024 casserole remained into the early 1960s, and the other shapes were dropped earlier.
045/945 oval casserole, Turquoise with White Snowflake.
Daisy: Pink (1956)
Snowflake: Charcoal, Turquoise, Opal/Turquoise (1956)
From late 1956, these four colour and pattern choices also represent the debut of oval 043 & 045 casseroles, dubbed Decorator Casseroles. They are the first opal Pyrex pieces to have a printed pattern. Charcoal with White Snowflake was the first to be discontinued, about 1960, and Turquoise with White Snowflake remained the longest, up to 1967. The other choices disappeared during the mid 1960s. More shapes & sizes in these patterns arrived later: Space Savers (1957), divided & non-divided dishes (1958).
Space Saver Casseroles (1957)
Appearing early 1957, these rectangular casseroles were available in two sizes. A 548 (1¼ Qt) is more shallow than a 575 (2 Qt), and a 550 lid fits both of them. Either size could be purchased individually with a clear Pyrex lid. Both sizes were also offered together in a 550 set with one Pyrex lid (550-C) and two flat metal lids (550-M). The latter were provided for freezer storage, and were meant to be sealed with freezer tape to be air-tight.
When Space Savers debuted, they were decorated with Snowflake and Daisy patterns, matching the oval Decorator Casseroles. Golden Acorn appeared later, in 1960. The Space Saver shape was made for a relatively short time, disappearing in 1964.
548 Space Saver, White Snowflake on Charcoal.
Bright Yellow bowls (1957)
This shade of yellow is unique, and it was available only on 300-series & 400-series nesting bowl sets. It does not match the yellow 404 of the regular multi-colour set. The all-yellow 300-series set remained into the early 1960s, and the 400-series set was dropped earlier.
(Photo: Yellow 300-series set.)
Family Flair dinnerware (1957)
There were five patterns to choose from when this coupe-shaped dinnerware was introduced: Field Flower, Pine Cone, Chinese Grass, and Quince which was available in Pink or Yellow. Within one year Field Flower and Pine Cone were dropped and the remaining patterns were re-named. Quince became Pink Petal & Yellow Petal, and Chinese Grass became Sea Isle, which is turquoise.
(Photo: Sea Isle saucer, Yellow Petal sugar bowl lid.)
Dinner plates, side plates, saucers and oval platters are patterned, and cups, soup/cereal bowls and oval serving bowls are solid-coloured. Creamers & sugar bowls are also solid-coloured, but sugar bowl lids are patterned. Family Flair was sold in 20-piece sets comprising four place settings. The product line was available for two or three years.
Butterprint: Turquoise (1957)
Gooseberry: Pink, Yellow/Black (1957)
Introduced late 1957, these three colour and pattern choices also represent the debut of 440-series Cinderella bowls. Turquoise Butterprint remained in production until 1968, while Pink Gooseberry was discontinued about 1966, and Yellow & Black Gooseberry disappeared in the early 1960s.
Also in turquoise Butterprint are round nesting bowls, sold in 400-series sets and 300-series sets, each bowl having a white background. Butter dishes in this pattern first appeared about 1960. Refrigerator dishes are also white-bodied and were offered in turquoise Butterprint and pink Gooseberry, the latter set not arriving until 1961.
Butterprint sets with special colour schemes also exist, each piece having a white background instead of using alternating colours: orange 440-series bowls, turquoise 440-series bowls, pink 470 casserole set, and turquoise 470 casserole set.
444 Cinderella bowl, orange Butterprint.
Divided Serving Dish, Oval Open Baker (1958)
They are basically the same, but one is divided and one is not. They first appeared with Daisy & Snowflake patterns, matching oval Decorator Casseroles & Space Savers. Golden Acorn appeared later, in 1960. Divided dishes became available in countless other patterns and remained until 1976, but the non-divided oval baker was dropped in the early 1960s.
The oval baker's model number is 053, and 063 signifies the divided dish, but except for those produced in the mid 1970s, the numbers do not appear on these sizes. In 1962, 063s were altered by adding an indentation across the base that mirrors the division across the interior. Older 063s lack this feature and their bottoms are identical to that of an 053 non-divided dish, which might explain why the model number is absent from both.
Depending on the pattern, 063 divided dishes were equipped with either a plain clear divided lid; a non-divided decorated lid, either clear or opal; a plain clear non-divided lid; or no lid at all. Typically no lid was provided with the 053 oval open baker, which is why it was called "open", but in two or three special sets it could be purchased as a covered casserole with a 945 lid.
Cinderella Casseroles (1958)
The small 470 set appeared in November 1958, consisting of a 471, 472 & 473, with a choice of pink Gooseberry or turquoise Butterprint. The larger sizes, 474 & 475, did not arrive until 1961 when they were combined with a 473 in a 480 set. Most, but not all Cinderella bowl patterns also can be found on Cinderella casseroles. Most notably, casseroles were not marketed in Yellow & Black Gooseberry, and in Sandalwood only a 470 set was offered.
473 (1 Qt) Cinderella Casserole, pink Gooseberry.
Corning Crown Dinnerware (1958)
1958 saw the launch of a new selection of opal Pyrex dinnerware, named Corning Crown Dinnerware. An alternative marketing approach was used, and for about two years the product line was distributed by door-to-door salespeople. The gold trimmed version was named Gold Tipped, and platinum trim was available too. Presumably the latter was called Platinum Tipped. Some pieces are branded as "Corning Crown" with a three-pointed crown logo, while others are marked "Corning Dinnerware" without a logo. Boxes were printed with the full name, "Corning Crown Dinnerware".
Corning Crown Dinnerware, Gold Tipped cup & saucer.
(Photo: Gold Tipped soup/cereal bowl. Dessert bowls are a similar width, but more shallow.)
Sets contain four place settings of: dinner plate, soup/cereal bowl, cup & saucer. Dessert bowls and a cream & sugar set also could be purchased. Bowls and saucers are coupe, and dinner plates have wide flat rims. The cream & sugar set's shape is borrowed from the earlier line of Pyrex Dinnerware that included Lime, Flamingo, etc. The pointy-handled cups resemble cup styles produced by Corning's MacBeth-Evans division in the late 1930s & early 1940s. A matching gold-trimmed 400-series bowl set was also named Gold Tipped and the Corning Crown brand name appeared on its packaging too.
Another decoration that seems related is Scallop Burgundy. It also includes pointy-handled cups and coupe bowls. But an even greater selection of pieces can be found in this pattern, equivalent to all shapes & sizes that were manufactured in Lime & Flamingo dinnerware, excluding cups. Markings on some Scallop Burgundy items are identical to those of Platinum & Gold Tipped, but many examples carry no backstamp or brand name at all.
Also see: Part Two (1960s - 1980s).
Why name Pyrex mixing bowls after Cinderella?
Pyrex Model Numbers
Which model numbers are duplicates?
Which Pyrex items are real Opal?
Extra Photos: Pyrex 1950s
Extra Photos: Clear Pyrex 1950s - 1960s
Extra Photos: British Pyrex (Part 1)
1945 Pyrex Booklet
1956 Advertisement: Pyrex Pie Plates, etc.
1956 Advertisement: Pyrex Ware
1956 Advertisement: Decorator Casseroles
1960 Pyrex Catalogue: Part One, Part Two
1961 Pyrex Leaflet: The Perfect Gift
1968 Pyrex Leaflet: Part One
Who designed the patterns?
Clear Pyrex 1915 - 1950: Casseroles, Round, Oval; Baking Pans, Pie Plates
Isn't this pattern known by a different name?
Isn't that date incorrect?
Didn't you just copy this from a book?
Magazine Advertisements, Newspaper Archives, Catalogues.