Grandmother’s vase. Unless it isn’t.


This little blue opalescent vase sat on the windowsill above the sink at grandmother’s house.

It’s a Fenton piece, probably from the 1940’s, just 4 inches tall, and not valuable.

It reminds me of childhood summers in a small town. The sound of a screen door slapping closed, the welcome shade of a big pecan tree in the back yard, a wavery old lady’s voice humming a tune as she washed dishes at the sink. High-ceilinged rooms and old-fashioned furniture. A big old clawfoot bath tub, an old bathroom sink with separate hot and cold taps.

I’m not sure this is the exact vase from my (step)grandmother’s house. I went in search of more like it, and found them. They were, I think, individually hand made – not machine made although manufactured in commercial quantities. I shopped for Fenton vases in antique shops and flea markets for a few years, and I found there were slight variations between pieces when compared side by side. I think I sent the original little vase to a relative and kept the closest copy.

But it’s possible I didn’t send it off. I just can’t remember. And I’m enjoying the small mystery – is it the one I knew as a kid, or one just like it?


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