Early 20th Century Dinnerware and Flatware Sets
Antique Early 19th Century George II Coffee and Tea Sets
Early 20th Century Victorian Coffee and Tea Sets
20th Century Modern Coffee and Tea Sets
Antique 18th Century Coffee and Tea Sets
20th Century Arts and Crafts Coffee and Tea Sets
Antique Early 19th Century Georgian More Silver, Flatware and Silverplate
Antique Late 19th Century Art Nouveau More Silver, Flatware and Silverplate
20th Century Flatware and Serving Pieces
Early 20th Century Russian Empire Flatware and Serving Pieces
Vintage 1940s Coffee and Tea Sets
Antique Late 19th Century Victorian Dinnerware and Flatware Sets
18k Gold, Sterling Silver
Antique 1880s Napoleon III Flatware and Serving Pieces
Flatware Caddy For Sale on 1stDibs
How Much is a Flatware Caddy?
Finding the Right Silver, Flatware and Silverplate for You
While early utensils were often shaped from clay, wood or bone, silversmiths later crafted flatware from precious metal. In the 19th century, mass production of electroplated flatware made silver utensils accessible to the middle class. Now, antique and vintage silver, flatware and silver-plate objects for dining and the home are heritage pieces reflecting this history of design.
Silver spoons were so prized in 15th-century England that people would travel with the valuable utensils. Forks in the 17th century were frequently made with steel and likewise only available to the upper class. Silver flatware continued to be produced in small workshops in the 18th century and was a luxury reserved for the elite. When George I came to the throne in 1714, the silver dining service — including plates, dishes, soup tureens, chargers and sauceboats — became all-important.
Innovative manufacturing techniques such as the electroplating process in the 19th century would transform silversmithing with industrialization. Sheffield plate was used from 1750 to 1880 and involved a fusion method to fabricate everything from knife handles to serveware. French industrial chemist Henri de Ruolz discovered a gilding and silver-plating process for metals in 1841, with the silver-like results so celebrated that Napoleon III ordered a 3,000-piece flatware set. The expansion of table service in the Victorian era also led to an increasing number of flatware and serving pieces in a canteen, or cutlery chest, all with specific uses, from toast forks to butter picks.
While affordable metal flatware is widely available today, historic brands including Gorham Manufacturing Company — whose legendary contribution to the history of silver making started in 1831 — and Christofle continue the tradition of silver and silver-plate flatware.
Browse 1stDibs for both antique and contemporary silver, flatware and silver-plate objects in a range of elegant designs to enhance your dining table.