Hanging Mirrors: The Bunnies Of The Reflective World

Hanging mirrors are arguably the most prolific of all mirror types. You'll find them everywhere, and in a multitude of shapes, sizes, materials and combinations. They're seen in salons, bedrooms, bathrooms, Feng-Shui-treated walls facing doorways, fortune-teller tents and hotel ballrooms all over the world. There's probably no place on earth that has people and no hanging mirror. One would think that it is possessed of some kind of magic that lets it enjoy the popularity that it does. And there is. It's called simplicity.

Hanging Mirrors: Who's The Coolest Of Them All

The elegantly simple concept of a hanging mirror is probably what caused all the fuss in the first place; although, for the humble mirror to be elevated to such a great height – at least 5 feet – there was that long waiting period in history when they had to hang around for nails to be invented and the idea to be thought up. If they had thumbs, there would have been at least a few centuries of twiddling before they attained their places of honor. In fact, nails very likely existed for nearly as long as mirrors, but two and two had to be put together before mirrors could be hung. At the time, hand-held mirrors held sway over the cosmetically inclined men and women of Europe, but they soon had to make way for the ultra modern "hands-free" mirrors that soon swept through the continent and even dribbled their way into other parts of the world.

Hanging Mirrors: Not Hard To Crack

If you're looking to buy one of these historically robust reflectors, you won't have to go very far. There are probably about twenty stores in your area alone that deal with wall mirrors of different kinds. You can have your pick of mirrors by shape, style and finish. There are mirrors of every imaginable geometric shape, mirrors of every unimaginable shape and mirrors of any customizable shape that your mind can come up with. Do you want a hanging mirror in the shape of your hand? Well no problem; just go to a mirror maker with your hand – you are required to keep it handy – and ask them to make a scaled template, and voila! Two weeks later, your face is in the palm of your hand. Do you want a mirror that goes all the way round a pillar? Yes, you can have that too. Of course, it will be expensive and it'll probably have to be done in sections, but it can be done and there are people to do it. The point being, the flexibility of hanging mirrors – not literally – is another thing that makes them so appealing.

Hanging Mirrors: Reflections Of A Mirror Maker

The history of making hanging mirrors from glass is an interesting one. Murano, a small island in the Venetian Lagoon, purported to be the only place in Europe for centuries where glass mirror making was known. As far back as 1291, glass mirrors were made by an exclusive group of artisans who were the only craftsmen allowed to marry into nobility. However, they were not to leave the Republic of Venice if they wanted their hands to remain attached to their bodies! With such regulations, it was only logical that the art would not spread out for at least a couple of centuries - which is exactly what happened. Around the early 1500s other countries developed methods of silvering glass, but it was not until the grand entrance of Manufacture royale de glaces de miroirs , or more popularly known today as Saint-Gobain did the rest of the world start to catch up. Pretty soon, most countries began to manufacture hanging mirrors and many other types of flat, convex and concave mirrors to feed a hungry market that hasn't let up even up to modern times. With that kind of history and future, hanging mirrors are sure to see many more generations of human faces, busts and bodies.