The Most Valuable Vintage Pyrex: Rare Pieces Worth Thousands

Vintage Pyrex glassware is a hot commodity among collectors, with the rarest patterns and pieces regularly selling for hundreds or even thousands of dollars. First introduced by Corning Glass Works in 1915, Pyrex revolutionized home cooking with its heat-resistant, shatter-proof borosilicate glass bakeware and kitchenware.

Over the decades, Pyrex continued innovating its designs and expanding its product lines. The iconic colored mixing bowls and casserole dishes featuring cheerful patterns hit the market in the 1940s and became an integral part of American kitchens. While vintage Pyrex remains popular for its durability and charming retro aesthetic, certain pieces are especially coveted by collectors for their rarity and soaring value.

What Makes Vintage Pyrex Valuable?

Not all vintage Pyrex is created equal in terms of collectibility and value. Pieces that command the highest prices tend to be older, rarer, and harder to find in good condition. The most sought-after items feature unique or short-lived colors and patterns, limited promotional pieces, or were produced in smaller quantities.

Condition also plays a huge role in determining value. Since Pyrex was made to be used, many vintage pieces show signs of utensil marks, scratches, fading, discoloration or damage that diminishes their worth. Collectors are willing to pay a premium for items in like-new or mint condition with no defects.

Some patterns that were very popular back in their heyday, like Butterfly Gold or Spring Blossom, are so common today that they hold little value on the secondary market. On the flip side, more obscure or lesser-known patterns have skyrocketed in value as savvy collectors have caught on to their scarcity.

With all that in mind, let‘s explore 10 of the most valuable and hardest-to-find vintage Pyrex patterns and pieces that avid collectors would love to get their hands on.

1. Lucky in Love Pattern (1959)

Lucky in Love casserole dish

The holy grail for many Pyrex collectors, a Lucky in Love casserole dish made headlines in 2017 when it sold for nearly $6,000 on Goodwill‘s online auction site. Featuring a charming mix of pink and green hearts and shamrocks, this whimsical 1959 pattern was never put into full production.

Only three prototypes are known to exist – one of which is housed in the Corning Museum of Glass. If another Lucky in Love piece ever comes to market, it will undoubtedly spark a bidding war and potentially set a new record price for vintage Pyrex.

2. Atomic Eyes Chip and Dip Set (1950s)

Atomic Eyes chip and dip bowl set

This rare and highly collectible 1950s promotional set features an Atomic Age-inspired geometric pattern of eyes or balloons rendered in black and white. The Atomic Eyes design graced double chip and dip sets as well as casserole dishes before being discontinued.

A pristine Atomic Eyes chip and dip set sold on eBay in 2020 for just under $1,500. Even single Atomic Eyes bowls regularly command prices of $500 or more depending on condition.

3. Pink Daisy 4-Piece Cinderella Bowl Set (1950s)

Pink Daisy Cinderella bowl set

Pretty in pink, this cheerful nesting bowl set decorated with stylized daisies was only produced for a couple of years in the late 1950s. The 4-piece Pink Daisy Cinderella bowl set has a distinctive squared-off rim design and includes 4-quart, 2.5-quart, 1.5-quart and 1-pint sized bowls.

While the Pink Daisy pattern isn‘t terribly rare, full sets in excellent condition can sell in the $300-$500 range. The handled Cinderella style makes them even more desirable and valuable to collectors compared to standard Pink Daisy mixing bowls.

4. Turquoise Pinch Bowl with Owl Motif (1960s)

Turquoise owl pinch bowl

Affectionately known to collectors as the "Owl Bowl," this adorable solid turquoise pinch bowl is decorated with a wide-eyed cartoon owl perched on a branch. Corning only produced the 10-ounce Owl Bowl for a short time in the 1960s, so it remains an elusive find today.

Mint condition Owl Bowls have sold for upwards of $800-$1,000 on eBay and Etsy in recent years. Even with some scratches or utensil marks, this rare promotional piece routinely sells in the $300-$500 range.

5. Golden Wheat 3-Piece Mixing Bowl Set (1970s)

Golden Wheat mixing bowl set

Sunny and bright, the cheerful Golden Wheat pattern was a 1970s limited edition promotional set featuring a gold and white stylized wheat design. The 3-piece Golden Wheat mixing bowl set includes a 4-quart, 2.5-quart and 1.5-quart bowl.

Despite being a more recent vintage, the Golden Wheat bowls are hard to come by with values hovering around $800-$1,000 for a complete set in excellent condition. Individual 4-quart Golden Wheat bowls can go for $150-$300.

6. Saxony 1-Pint Casserole Dish (1960s)

Saxony 1-pint casserole dish

Delicate and ladylike, the powder blue Saxony pattern features a lace-inspired motif of white snowflakes and scrolls. The 1-pint casserole dish was part of a limited edition gift set produced in the 1960s.

While not the flashiest pattern, Saxony remains popular with collectors who appreciate its understated elegance. The 1-pint round casserole with lid in excellent condition often sells in the $200-$400 range.

7. Butterfly Gold 4-Piece Cinderella Bowl Set (1970s)

Butterfly Gold Cinderella bowl set

One of the most mainstream patterns, Butterfly Gold was ubiquitous throughout the 1970s featuring a sunny yellow background with a brown and orange stylized butterfly and floral design. It graced everything from mixing bowls to casseroles to coffee mugs.

Although very common, certain Butterfly Gold pieces hold their value well, especially the handled Cinderella nesting bowl sets. Prices for full 4-piece sets in pristine condition can reach $150-$250 due to the enduring popularity of this cheerful pattern.

8. Black Snowflake 2-Quart Casserole Dish (1950s)

Black Snowflake casserole dish

The elegant Black Snowflake pattern features a delicate geometric snowflake motif in black against a crisp white background. It was only produced for a couple of holiday seasons in the late 1950s.

Among the harder-to-find snowflake patterns, the Black Snowflake 2-quart round casserole dish with lid in excellent condition typically sells in the $100-$200 range. The same dish in the more common turquoise Snowflake Garland pattern is a fraction of the price.

9. Verde Square Flower 1.5 Pint Casserole Dish (1960s)

Verde Square Flower casserole dish

The bright olive green Verde Square Flower pattern was another short-lived 1960s promotional piece. It sports a fun Op Art-inspired design of white squares forming a floral motif across the vibrant verde green background.

As with many of these limited edition patterns, the Verde Square Flower was discontinued after only a year or two of production. The 1.5 pint oval casserole dishes with lids routinely sell for around $75-$150 in excellent used condition.

10. Gooseberry 4-Piece Cinderella Bowl Set (1950s)

Gooseberry Cinderella nesting bowls

Rounding out the top 10 is the classic 1950s Gooseberry pattern featuring clusters of abstract pink berries on a crisp white background. It adorned everything from refrigerator dish sets to casseroles but remains most coveted in the handled 4-piece Cinderella nesting bowl set.

Pink Gooseberry Cinderella bowl sets in good used condition regularly sell in the $200-$300 range. The largest 4-quart Cinderella bowl alone can go for up to $100 making it a budget-friendlier option for collectors to add some Gooseberry charm to their vintage Pyrex display.

Tips for Collecting Vintage Pyrex

  • Familiarize yourself with the various Pyrex patterns, colors, shapes, and pieces that tend to be most collectible and valuable. Pyrex Love and the Pyrex Passion websites are great resources for identifying and dating Pyrex.

  • Examine potential purchases carefully for any damage, scratches, fading, discoloration or repairs that can diminish value. Condition is key to getting top dollar.

  • Shop around and check prices on multiple online marketplaces like eBay, Etsy, Facebook Marketplace, and niche Pyrex buy/sell groups to get a sense of the going rate for different pieces.

  • Consider alternative spellings and search terms like "Pyrex," "Pyrek," or "milk glass" as sometimes sellers mislabel pieces. With a little digging, you may find a hidden gem.

  • Snap up any rare patterned or colorful Pyrex pieces you come across at thrift stores, estate sales, or garage sales. The resale value may be much higher than the asking price.

  • Be prepared to pay up for pristine, unused pieces still in the original box or packaging. These "mint in box" items are the most valuable and hardest to find.

  • Store and display your vintage Pyrex collection safely to avoid chips and cracks. Hand wash in warm soapy water and dry thoroughly. Avoid extreme temperature changes that could cause the glass to crack.

Whether you‘re a seasoned collector or new to the vintage Pyrex game, it‘s an exciting and colorful world to explore. Half the fun is scoping out thrift stores, antique malls, and online marketplaces to spot that rare gem like Mom or Grandma used to have. Even if you never find a $6,000 Lucky in Love casserole of your own, you‘re sure to amass a charming collection full of nostalgic appeal that may just turn into a savvy investment.

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