Tiara Glass was marketed by Tiara Exclusives of Dunkirk, Indiana, USA through home-parties held by sales agents, between 1970 and 1998. The offices of Tiara Exclusives were adjacent to the
Indiana Glass Company, and both companies belonged to the Lancaster Colony Corporation. Indiana Glass made a very large volume of the glassware for Tiara. Before and after the closure of the Indiana Glass hand shop (in 1989), Tiara glass was also made by other glassworks including Fenton Art Glass and L.E.Smith.
They produced a wide variety of handmade and machine-made glassware, mostly to a high standard, and including some reproductions or re-issues of patterns originally made by Indiana Glass and other companies during the depression years. These re-issues used the same moulds for patterns such as Avocado and Sandwich. Apart from paper labels, they were not marked "Tiara". There were some differences in color.
Of the Tiara Exclusives patterns and colors that have a lively collector following, the Sandwich pattern seems to be one of the most popular. Indiana Glass Company produced Sandwich pattern Depression glass during the1920s. During approximately the same time period, the elegant glass company Duncan & Miller produced a similar Sandwich pattern. Most of the Depression-era Indiana Glass molds and some Duncan & Miller molds were put into use during the 1970s -1990s to produce Tiara Sandwich glass. Tiara sold Sandwich Glass in clear, amber, ruby, light "chantilly" green, teal "spruce" green, dark "bicentennial" blue, and pale peach. This article will focus on the amber color.
Tiara named the amber color "Gold" or "Golden Amber," but it is most often referred to by collectors as simply "Amber." In their 1978 Tiara catalog, the company wrote "To the best of our knowledge, Sandwich Glass dinnerware has never before been made in the Golden Amber color". However, Indiana Glass did produce their Sandwich pattern in amber during the Depression Era, albeit a lighter shade of amber than some of the Tiara pieces. The single-handled tray below is an example of Indiana amber sandwich glass. Tiara Sandwich varies from almost the same shade as Depression Amber to a much darker color.
A complete dinnerware set can be collected in Tiara's Amber Sandwich along with a large assortment of accessory items. During the time that Tiara's glassware was produced, some molds were changed or replaced and additional shapes were added. Over eighty different items are known to exist in Tiara's Amber Sandwich glass.
Some of the more elusive items in amber are an 18" table lamp, a gravy boat, a tall Duncan & Miller style basket, and a rectangular butter dish. More common are the pieces to the basic dinnerware set including plates, cups, saucers, bowls, and tumblers. The fairy lamp (called a "Glo Lamp" by Tiara) is one of the most commonly found items. The wine set, consisting of a decanter, tray, and goblets can also be found somewhat easily. Both the Glo Lamp and wine set continue to be popular with collectors.
Amber sandwich glass was offered by Tiara throughout the 1970s and 1980s. By 1992, amber had been discontinued as a color for their Sandwich designs. The pattern continued to be offered in other colors until Lancaster Colony closed the Tiara Exclusives direct selling organization in 1998.
Although the Tiara selling organization exists no longer, a few select pieces of Tiara glass are still being produced. In 1999, Home Interiors began offering Tiara Sandwich Glass dinnerware in an attractive Plum color. The Sandwich wall clock is currently advertised in some periodicals, available in Spruce and Peach. Here is a picture of an original 1978 amber sandwich wallclock from Tiara.
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