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Who knew? Pyrex dishes are collectibles

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Remember those thick glass bowls and mugs you used before plastic became fad and the disposable container era began?

Well that restaurant-grade glass is making a comeback both for its usability and its unique retro style.

While shopping for a set of glass cereal bowls for our kids, my wife Miyuki and I met local collector Shawn Sanders, who since moving to Canada from Colorado has begun to amass a great deal of knowledge and a wonderful collection of mid-20th century kitchenware.
Shawn began his hobby innocently.

"It started a couple of years ago when my sister who lives in California asked me to help find a piece for her,"¨he said.  

I never went shopping at thrift stores, but there I was looking and finding some really nice items. Winnipeg is a wonderful place for vintage-era collectibles. You start looking for one thing and you end up finding something else interesting, too.

"I was at a church sale when I found this fantastic piece," he said, describing an opaque white bowl with kissing red birds and orange flowers.

"The pattern is from a limited series produced by Pyrex in the early ’70s entitled ‘friendship’.’ You have to love it because it stands out," Shawn said.

Now Shawn has several sets of vintage Pyrex pieces and several of another American company named Anchor Hocking, specifically its Fire King brand. You would recognize Fire King’s Sheaves of Wheat series for its creamy jade colour.

The 1950s exists in Winnipeg in these practical heirlooms.

"With delightful shopping at places like downtown’s The Old House Revival Company and our city’s full participation in trading sites like Kijiji and Etsy, I feel a part of a real thrift community," Sanders said.  

Shawn has branched out from glassware and also shops for same-era teak furniture and collectibles from Norway and Denmark, such as Cathrineholm enamel ware and miniature teak Vikings.

Send him a message at shawncsanders@gmail.com

Evan Comstock is a community correspondent for East Kildonan.

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