Modern glass bottles are manufactured in large batches by using molds. All the bottles are the same size, shape and color for a particular batch. Companies that make liquids to be contained in these bottles may sell a few different sizes of them, but they still appear all the same. Standardization has made each bottle size the same to help manufacturers give the public a measured amount of product. This has not always been the case.
Before manufacturing became a highly standard field, bottles were made individually. Each one was hand-crafted by an artisan. There was less demand for bottles and many companies could not afford to use glass for their products. This was just one of the factors that made glass bottles unique. While each bottle was crafted by hand, this does not mean molds were not used. It simply means that machines did not control the entire process. This left room for mistakes, impurities in the glass and gave each piece its own look.
Glass bottles have been collected for many years. Vintage bottles are found in old buildings and estate sales. Barns and garages are another place these bottles were kept. Antique and vintage bottles have even been found when buildings are torn down. They were tossed into the walls to fill empty space because they were no longer being used. There are many interesting places where glass bottles from decades past have been found.
Most collectors keep bottles that were not manufactured in great quantities. In the past, bottles were colored in browns and greens. Occasionally there were small batches of other colors made. Many of these vintage bottles have maker’s marks on them. They also have product labels embedded in the glass itself. This is an interesting field of glass artistry to explore.