Changes in glass making technology made glassware affordable for most people. Glassware could be mass produced and no longer required as many as 7 or 8 artisans to handmake a blank and go through the various stages required to make a piece of cut-glass which was only affordable by the wealthy Victorians.
Pressed glass and Pattern glass are often used interchangeably. However, there is a distinction: all pattern glass is pressed glass but not all pressed glass is pattern glass. Pattern glass refers to glassware that was made in table settings. There are about 1,000 pattern glass patterns and about 3,000 overall pressed glass patterns.
Before the advances in the glass making process were made, glass was very expensive since each piece was handmade and handcut. Only the rich could afford the luxury of the handcut crystal. With the invention of the mold presses, glassware production increased dramatically and for the first time matching sets of glassware were available for everyday use. The matching sets were called pattern glass. Some sets had as many as 100 separate pieces.