The Orbit line consists of flatware from Brittany or Rhythm (depending on the treatment) and specially made hollowware. These hollow pieces, coffeepot, shakers, teacup, sugar, creamer, and sauceboat fast stand were modeled in November and December of 1963. The covered butter was modeled in February of '64 and he line was put into production soon after.
The majority of flatware comes from Brittany - a plain round rim shape, but there are a few treatments that make use of Rhythm - a plain round coupe (rimless) shape. All the bowls come from Rhythm. Only the plates and saucers received decal decorations along with colored trim. Twelve-inch chop plates were created for the new line since the original Rhythm line didn't have one and Brittany's were too large at 13-inches.
The decals are stylized and bold using only a few tones. The hollowware's exteriors are done in solid colors to match the trim of the flatware done in blue, green, gold, and tan. This makes any piece of hollowware usable with several different types of decaled Orbit flatware. Some of the hollowware can be found as undecorated blanks with no color.
Expect the larger flatware pieces to have a general HLC backstamp with date. Dinner plates, chop plates, serving bowls are almost always marked. Smaller pieces and the hollowware are generally not marked. This is a trend that would continue with the dinnerware lines made until the 1980s. Orbit was made until the very early 1970s.
Orbit is a unique shape in HLC's catalog. The pronounced cylindrical bodies and oddly shaped handles combine to make a unique design. Even the shaker are atypical with their slender and tall appearance. Most of the obit pieces are not hard to find. The coffeepot and sauceboat stand are the only two standard items which pose any type of challenge. A teapot and covered casserole were modeled in 1969 and are the most difficult pieces of Orbit to find today.
Orbit was one of the first lines designed by Vincet Broomhall who became Art Director at HLC in October of 1962.