Latest trends in antique mirror glass are making a huge splash
Every trend comes back around. Just this year, we’ve seen fashion trends from platform shoes to velvet tracksuits make interesting comeback. One of the most recent trends we’ve seen in home and glass design is the return of the antique mirror.
Vintage or real antique mirrors occur because of the wear that occurs over time on the mirror. So, let’s talk about how mirrors are manufactured.
Prior to the 1840s, mirrors were made from a thin layer of mercury that was spread over tin then covered with glass. The chemical reaction that occurred between the mercury and tin caused the substance to adhere to the glass and created the “mirror” effect. However, over time mercury tarnishes and oxidizes causing the mirror to look aged.
Starting in 1835, Justin Von Leibig began using silver instead of mercury to coat the glass and created the silvering process that is still used in some mirrors today. Using his original process, silver is melted and applied in a thin layer to coat the glass. Then, a protective coat is used to avoid chipping. Done incorrectly, this whole process can cause waves in the glass and distortion when viewing the mirror. You’ll notice that some of these older silver-backed mirrors may have dark lines due to uneven coating and cause the antique look that is so popular today. Some manufacturers went back to using the mercury process in the 1940s due to the issues with distortion.
Today, most mirrors are made using aluminum coated glass. Aluminum provides a higher level of reflection and can also oxidize like the older materials mentioned. However, if done correctly, and painted over, these mirrors can last for years.
So, if your mirrors today are higher quality and provide better reflection, why are antique mirrors popular? Just like other fashion trends, glass styles are constantly evolving. Many interior designers are finding creative uses for older materials and aging, whether natural or manufactured to produce a used or older look. Designers are finding many new uses for antique and distressed mirrors in particular, including some exciting new takes on the classic wet bar. It offers a stunning flourish to any room and can bring things together in a way that neither you – or your guests – will ever forget.
Many designers use these antique or antiqued mirrors as the backsplash on a wet bar, a mirrored wall to make a room feel larger than it is, or as background pieces behind shelves, in trays, or as “windows” in custom cabinetry.
Given the difficulty of finding a high quality aged, distressed, or antique mirror, many designers lean on organizations like Drexler Glass to manufacture or create a faux-aged mirror to meet the need. Thanks to our contacts and understanding of the market, Drexler has been on top of this development since it began. And we have positioned our products and services to offer elegant antique mirrors for wet bars or really any purpose that catches the eye and works within a wide range of design styles.
That means that, in addition to our vintage antique mirror patterns, we are pushing the envelope with new designs, colors, and patterns, so that our mirror perfectly complements your decor and color palette.
Drexler also provides custom cut mirror tiles in a variety of shapes, for your designing pleasure. An elegant wet bar, done right, will become the sparkling jewel in the crown of a well-designed interior space, with light and mirrors reflecting your crystal, glassware, silver, and bottles to stunning effect.
Convinced? OK, now for the next step: Where to begin?
There is no reason to try and figure out the perfect look without some help. That is why Drexler designers are here to help – and make it simple for you. All you need to do is bring a swatch of wallpaper or a sample of marble by our showroom and we can help you choose a complementary antique mirror.
Whether your design is cool and modern or rich and traditional, we have the patterns to compliment it. Your imagination has no limits, and our mirror patterns are ready to go. Call us today or just stop by our midtown Atlanta showroom!
No matter what trends come and go in the glass and glass accessories market, you can rest assured that Drexler will be on top of it – and even leading the way. We make it our goal to produce whatever environment you desire, which is why we stay on top of design developments, so that will never be at a loss for what you require.