Antique Glass Lamp Shades And The Beauty Thereof
Let’s take a look at why this is so.
Have you ever looked at a lamp shade and wondered who thought of such a thing? Perhaps the idea itself has spiked your curiosity. It is not surprising if this is the case. Lamp shades are everywhere, and there are still lamp shades around that are old enough to be antiques. In fact, there are still lamp shades around from hundreds of years ago in some cultures! Antique glass lamp shades are a fascinating way to look back in time, as well as decorate here and now.
A Quick History Of Antique Glass Lamp Shades
The Japanese are the first culture that was found to use lamp shades. They constructed them out of colored paper in many different designs. During festivals and such, the lamps with their shades would be strung from roof top to roof top giving the streets a mystical glow. However, since the light source was a candle, the shades often caught on fire when the wind got heavy. Thus, the Japanese began waxing the paper, causing a better glow and making it harder to catch on fire.
The First In America
The earliest documented record of American lamp shades is a patent filed in 1802 by Williams & Co. of Boston, Massachusetts. However, historians have stipulated that Thomas Edison was the first to use the style of lamp shade most people think of today in America, because he began using them to shade the harsh light from his newly invented electric light bulb. Since then, thousands of companies have stepped into the market of manufacturing and selling lamp shades.
The emphasis of early American lamp shades was on romantic and decorative cloth shades around the Victorian and Edwardian periods. Glass shades were popularly used during this time, and they are still relatively easy to find and purchase today. However, the cloth shades are nearly impossible to find now. The styles that these cloth shades were made in include floral, fringed, laced, pleated, and animal. As the 1920s and 30s went by, the trend shifted to Art Neuvau and Deco style in which glass was predominantly used, but production companies such as Handel still made beautiful cloth shades. From the 40s to the 60s Aladdin was a dominant lamp shade manufacturer. They used mostly a paper plastic material in their shades, while maintaining a small quota of cloth lamp shades.
Antique Lamp ShadesAntique Glass Lamp Shades
However, trends have led away from this beautiful style of lamp shade making them extremely rare. The antique lamp shades available today are usually made of glass, antique glass lamp shades. Collectors and enthusiasts eagerly purchase any cloth lamp shade still surviving from the past. This, along with the fact that cloth does not hold up under the test of time very well, has contributed to the amazing scarcity of these beautiful antiques.
Today there are all manner of antique table lamps and shades. Maybe your preference leans toward an antique moser glass lamp or antique oil lamps. Thanks to the Internet, you can find these as well as shades for them. You can find them in sandwich glass, and there is even a revived interest today in kerosene oil lamps. They’re not only functional, but quite lovely.
Although many would not have guessed it, lamp shades are a wonderful look at history. They combine a practical use with the artistic style of the time period. Many cultures used them in the past. Americans loved to decorate their homes with them, which is still true today. That is why antique glass lamp shades are a valuable piece of American history. Also, they make any room an eye-grabber.
Finding Antique Floor Lamp Parts
One of your primary considerations before buying very old antique lamps for your home or other place should be whether there are readily available antique lamp parts that you can use to repair any shortcomings. Without these replacement parts, those antique table lamps might look great but they might never work.
Bringing An Antique Lamp Into Your Home
An antique lamp is a wonderful way of bringing both light and history into your living room or dining room or bedroom. There are many varieties of antique lamps from which to choose. Each of these, incidentally, has some parts that are the same, but others which are quite different. As a part of your home remodeling project, these charming lighting sources can serve the dual function of bringing light, but also adding some class to the home.
What Are Some Of The Options In Antique Lamps?
This is a wonderful choice for decorating the kitchen, especially one with a country design. They also look nice on the desk or hung up in the guest bathroom. You could hang one on the front porch or out lighting up your back yard. The flickering flame only adds to the ambiance and charm of the antique kerosene lamp.
Antique Piano Lamp
Despite the name, this can actually be clipped onto things such as a desk and used for a reading light. Or its wonderful for lighting up a framed photo on a shelf or above your fireplace. A piano lamp also looks great in the kitchen or hallway. In fact, their subtle nature ensures that they work in almost any room.
Antique Floor Lamps
These are slender and tall and usually come with special lamp shades made of colored glass, brass strands and frills. These are perfect for lighting up a corner or even a whole room. The floor lamp commands attention no matter where you place it, although they work best in the living room, den, family room or hallway.
Create A Better Look With These Lamps
The antique table lamp looks great on end tables in the living room or in your bedroom, especially to accent a traditional or country look.
All of which brings us back to our primary point: What if you get your lamp and there is a missing part? Or after some use, what if a part breaks or stops working?
It’s important that you have a source of antique lamp parts. You might need replacement candelabra for your floor lamp, a period-authentic lamp shade, replacement electrical parts, a replacement base or breaks, etc. You’ll find parts for brass lamps, glass lamps, or basically any lamps.
Fortunately, today, it’s easier than ever to find such parts. Not because they’re more readily available locally; they’re not. Through a simple search on the internet you can find just the part you need for your antique lamp, and sometimes you can even afford to be picky about the price. From the comfort of your own home, you can track down antique floor lamp parts, antique oil lamp parts, and more.
Antique lamp parts are not as readily available as parts for modern-day parts. But thanks to the Worldwide web, it can be just as easy to bring them to you so that you can get many more years of enjoyment from your antiques.
Recognizing Antique Oil Hurricane Lamps
The collector can find antique oil lamps in a variety of places.
They’re sold on Internet websites, in classified ads, at flea markets and antique shops. There can also be many reproductions and even outright counterfeits. How do you recognize the legit oil lamp from the not-so-legit? Believe it or not, it’s not as difficult as you might think.
When you explore the local antique store or flea market, you’ll usually see many different kinds of oil lamps. These come in glass, pottery and porcelain styles. A true antique will obviously normally be non-electric, although there are a few that are borderline antique that might have an electrical power feature.
There are antique coal oil lamps, antique oil hurricane lamps, and other varieties. But here’s the disturbing part: Most of what you see at a flea market or antique shop are not true antiques. You have to examine them closely to pick up on the obvious clues that these are probably fairly new lamps made to look like antiques.
Antique Electric Lamps
One of the main clues that you need to examine is the lamps size.
True antique lamps are generally not very small in size. Most, in fact, were made quite large, because they were designed to burn for many long hours without the need for a refill. A smaller lamp is usually a newer one, made when antique electric lamps could easily replace the lamp that burns out.
Another clue to examine is the oil lamps globe.
Make sure the original globe is still intact, because it gives evidence of whether it is indeed an antique lamp. An antique globe is usually hand blown. And you can usually tell if it’s an actual hand blown globe by whether or not it has imperfections. A reproduction usually gets rid of imperfections; not so with a true antique. You should be able to see what were once air bubbles in the glass.
An antique globe also is usually thicker than the glass in a newer lamp.
If you take the globe off and look at the bottom, you should see a thickness and roughness on the edge that is not present on a reproduction. This roughness is where the maker cut the lamp with a glass cutter and then chipped off the edge to make it level when it sits on the shelf.
Look At The Different Antique Lamp Parts
There are other clues as to whether the lamp is a true antique, beyond the evidence of the globe. The bases weight should tell you something. Because true antique oil lamps are thick, they should feel heavy for their size. Also, examine the part of the oil lamp which holds the wick. This section unscrews in two different places on older lamps. Make sure to look at these different antique lamp parts.
One final clue will vary depending on the lamp. Many antique oil lamps still look somewhat dingy. It might appear to be a dirty film inside the container. This happens with lamps that were used with kerosene, which leaves a brown film inside.
The hunt for antique oil lamps can be a fun challenge even an exciting hobby. A top quality oil lamp looks nice and can actually be used for practical lighting and heat. Most of all tough, they’re an inexpensive and charming way to decorate your home.