Monday, May 19, 2008

The earliest known glass salver, or server as it was sometimes called, was modeled after silver. It was created in England to serve beer or liquids and the "tray" kept it from getting "the Carpit and Cloathes." In the 17th century they are often shown supporting one or more wine glasses.

The most popular style was the molded pedestal stem. After 1800 the edge of the foot is usually folded upwards & most had solid tops. The most spectacular role of the salver was in a dessert pyramid comprised of two to five salvers of graduated diameter set one upon the other to create a pyramid effect. Each layer bore an arrangement of glassware (syllabubs) filled with jellies, creams, & sweetmeats. The smallest salver at the top was usually crowned with a 'Top Glass' for preserved fruit. And you thought Martha designed that look????

Interestingly, these stands were first made in America in the 1770s in Philadelphia. South Boston Flint Glass Works listed the form among its products in 1818; their salvers ranged from 8-15 inches in diameter and cost from $1.67 to $6.00 each. The following year, the firm extended the range down to 6 and up to 17 inches.

In the 1800s these stands were in everyone's homes. it...even a stack of Twinkies would look good on them. I use them in my shop for display pedestals as you can see.


sita said...

I love the blue one! I love how you use them at your shop I find myself putting everything on mine too, thanks for sharing the info about them.

Shabby in Pink Boutique said...

Oh How interesting! The blue and the middle pic with the clear glass are my favorite. Hope you have a beautiful day!
Pink Hugs,

Patricia said...

That's really interesting. Never knew that. Love the photos, you have some beauties there.


Anonymous said...


Thank you for the lesson on cake servers, who knew. I love learning new things. I love the cake plate too.


Love your music too!

gail said...

Hi Susan,, I dont know what it is about cake plates, but i love them. They are so pretty and can be used for so many things,,, thanks for sharing... pink hugs, gail

Inka Smith said...

I love cake plates. I use them all the time and not just for cake either. Sometimes I will put a vase of roses on them! Great info too. Thanks for sharing.

Unknown said...

Hi Susan,
Thank you for the information. I soak up information like a sponge. Aren't the whys and wherefores half the fun of antiquing and collecting? I have a collection of common cake plates (no pedestals).They come in so handy!
P.S. I prefer the blue one,
Theresa @ Cottage Violets

Carolyn Kocman said...

you are a wealth of information, professor...or should i say librarian?!

Marie said...

Boardwalk. BOARDWALK!! I love the Drifters. Thanks for the musical treat. AND the cake plates, or servers. That is really interesting. Thanks. ciao

Miniature Patisserie Chef said...

HI Susan,

I love cake stands/servers, as I collect them in miniature scale for my miniatures too! I love the blue one, it's so exquisite looking!

Pei Li

Sweet Necessi-Teas said...

Susan I learned some things I didn't know. Thanks for sharing this wealth of information. I love cake stands--they go so well with Tea!

Deb said...

Hi Susan....thank you for the informative blog post. I have a collection of at least 15 cake stands and it is nice to know some history about them.