Most milk glass sea glass comes from tableware. Its peak production periods were between the 1890s and the 1950s when it was used for things like coffee mugs, plates, jars and vases. Milk glass has been produced worldwide over hundreds of years, so dating it can be difficult because its main production period spans over such a long period of time.
Colors of Milk Glass
Besides opaque white, milk glass also comes in a few other colors such as lime green (Jadeite), creamy yellow (Custard glass), purple and soft blue.
Yellow custard glass was popular in the United States between the 1890s up to 1910. It was also produced many years before in Europe, China, and Egypt. Like white milk glass, custard milk glass was also used mainly for tableware.
Milk glass sea glass in itself is rare, but it’s more likely you’ll find white opaque sea glass pieces than the other soft pastel colors.
Milk Glass and Canning
In the early 1900s, white milk glass was used in large volumes for lids for food canning jars. They were called White Crown closures. It’s likely that many of the white milk glass pieces found on the shores come from these lids.
The mixing of different colored milk glass called “Slag glass” was extremely popular in the 1880s. If you find a piece of Slag glass, consider yourself quite fortunate because it’s extremely rare.
Milk Glass Sea Glass or Glass Sea Glass
The main difference between milk glass sea glass and regular glass sea glass is milk glass is not as transparent. This is evident especially when it’s wet or held up to a light. In the picture below, milk glass sea glass is on the left and clear glass sea glass is on the right.
If you want to research more information about milk glass, check out the National Milk Glass Collectors Society.
Vaseline, UV Milkglass
Some milkglass contains the element uranium dioxide, which makes the glass glow under a black or ultraviolet light. These shards of sea glass milkglass are extremely rare.