1962 special, Early American 043 oval casserole with mounter #6262. Pieces like this, dishes from a standard pattern collection packaged with an accessory, are separate from what collectors think of as "promo" pieces, which were typically, in terms of color and decoration, different from any seen elsewhere in the Pyrex opalware line. This cradle also appears to have been used for the coveted "Pink Stems" promo.
A new special for 1968, the Verde 2 qt. round 024 casserole with mounter. Also available was the Pineapple 024 promo featuring the same cradle. Marketed in the same time frame was the trading stamp program version of the Verde (aka Square Flowers) 024 casserole, which was oddly supplied with a cradle style Corning had last used for its 1962 Pyrex promos. Verde and Pineapple 024s would later be offered without cradles, and instead with 684 utility lids.
Town & Country standard version Cinderella 470 round casserole set. The 1 qt. 473 is one of two in this pattern collection, the other being orange like the 471 shown here.The orange 473 belongs to the 480 set, allowing it to follow the same color sequence as the 470.
Terra, 1964-1965. Earthenware effect created by a technique known as a "scratch process", produced by a patented machine made especially for the purpose. A glossy brown layer was applied and fired on first, followed by a matte charcoal coat. The piece was then affixed to a rotating mechanism that removed bands of the black topcoat. Only round shapes were capable of being decorated in this manner. All Terra pieces were sold individually. Even if you wanted to make a set of bowls or casseroles, you couldn't, as there was inexplicably no 402 round bowl nor a 473 Cinderella casserole. The pattern was short lived, likely due to the extra expense involved in producing it.
What a day. An impromptu road trip got us to a spot I know has some Pyrex. Passed over a couple of pieces I might otherwise have bought if I didn't have them already. Saw a Bluebelle 402 and thought $18 a more-than-reasonable price. Until I got it into better light. Put it back. Next stop, that place you pass by because you've never found any Pyrex there. I applied my "you need to stop there, anyway" rule and did. Got this set for an unbelievable $30. Granted, it took about 30 minutes of BKF, but I managed to slog through it.
Pyrex Passion author Michael Barber recently wrote on his blog about being asked if he had noticed variations in the decoration of the Friendship 473 round Cinderella casseroles. Like perhaps most of us, he had not. But a quick check of his collection verified it was true. The birds at the opposite ends of the decoration have either a single red "flourish' or a double orange one above each. Since the lids for the Friendship casseroles were changed from decorated clear glass to decorated opal during the pattern's production, it might be tempting to assume a change in the pattern on the dish coincided with that. I was able to find another instance of this curiosity, but am afraid it really provides no answers, just more questions.
The photo above is from the 1973 Pyrex Canada catalog, showing all decorated clear glass lids. You can see that each round casserole set contains a different variation of the 473. Curious is that a replacement parts listing in the same booklet lists both clear and decorated opal lids as being available for the round casseroles. Even more curious, it lists only opal lids for the oval casseroles.
Two years of patience and a couple of instances of plain old dumb luck got me this AH 500 set for under $50. This set is one of the more difficult to find/complete because, even though Autumn Harvest was marketed 1979-1986, refrigerator sets were discontinued after the first half of 1981.
Two mugs in the blue train pattern. Child feeding sets were comprised of a divided dish, a bowl, and a mug each decorated in one of two patterns: red circus or blue train. Complete sets usually command a premium price, but stray individual pieces can often be had inexpensively. These two mugs were $5 each at a flea market.
Pyrex 3212 12-cup Cinderella Beverage Server, 1958-1960. Found in mint condition at #SunsetRailstopFleaMarket, but without its original gold anodized tea infuser ball, serendipitously found on eBay.
While turquoise and pink remain the perennial Pyrex favorites, Friendship's colors and decoration are by far the boldest and most striking of the standard patterns.