Proportion is a key consideration when choosing props for a food set. Because serving sizes these days are generally smaller (and we want our food presentation to remain the focal point) most of the plates I use are salad size. In turn, all supporting table top props need to come down in size, too.
I'm always on the look out for small glassware pieces. Vintage juice and shot glasses are very versatile. Tiny glasses can hold hors d'oeuvres picks, too.
I tend toward simpler patters, stars, stripes...polka dots!
Classic juice glasses can double as European wine glasses.
I have a thing for etched glass designs. The detail is just enough to break up a boring solid colored beverage, and they throw interesting light patterns when empty.
This is my favorite etched glass...amazing detail! Looking through it is like peering into a bird cage. I wish I knew the history behind it, if anyone has any thoughts, please share!
On Camera with photographer Stephen Hamilton: Vintage Glassware