Who doesn't like shiny? If you are like most others, mercury glass will attract your eye in an instant. Whether you are after the antique versions for collectors' items or take a shine to the modern day home decor equivalents, this decorative glass is sure to inspire some talk. It adds a bit of shabby chic bling to any occasion or room. Here you'll learn more about mercury glass, get some ideas on great ways to use it, and learn about the pricing for it out in stores.
Mercury Glass: Bling For The Shabby Chic Set
It's got the eye-catching metallic gleam of antique silver, and yet it only costs a sliver of what you'd expect. That's the magic of mercury glass. Since the 1840's, this decorative glass has been making a name for itself around Europe and the United States. It's been known as "poor man's silver" as it's a cost-effective way to create a beautiful metallic motif without the high price of precious metals. And things haven't changed. In fact the look of mercury glass has only grown in popularity in recent years, especially with the designers and home decorators who are into shabby chic design.
As mercury glass pieces age, the solution begins to become slightly gold tinted in areas, flakey, cracked, and spotted, giving the glass a very vintage feel. It's a well sought after look that complements many classic design motifs and adds a nice decor juxtaposition to ultra-modern homes.
You can find many incredible home decor items made of (or to look like) mercury glass. There's mercury glass vases, door knobs, plates, utensils, tea light holders, Christmas decorations, lamps, and the list goes on. In fact, there are many surprises out there when it comes to mercury glass decor.
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How Authentic Mercury Glass Is Made
Authentic mercury glass is a hand blown glass process where the glass is double walled and a silvering liquid is placed between the narrow space between the walls. The process is very artisanal, and authentic mercury glass can be more pricy than other pieces of home decor, especially if you are looking for antique pieces as collectors' items. The look, though, is one of a kind and well worth it for those hunting for the real thing.
Faux Mercury Glass: A Modern Day Equivalent
The look of mercury glass has inspired many modern retailers to find ways to replicate the style in a budget friendly way. In fact, many pieces you'll find at retailers today are faux mercury glass and are no more expensive than most other home decor pieces. They are made from clear glass that is then coated with a mixture made from grape sugar and silver nitrate. This mixture creates a mirrored finish that shares a similar look to the metallic beauty of authentic mercury glass. With age, the finish begins to flake creating a vintage appearance similar to the real thing.
Create Your Own Faux Mercury Glass
If you are into do-it-yourself projects or arts and crafts, you can also create faux mercury glass using mirror paint. With a spray can or two of this paint, you can transform any clear glass object into a shiny piece of home decor. To create the more vintage look, many DIY pros spray the paint with a vinegar and water mixture afterwards to create a distressed feel that helps give the appearance of authentic mercury glass. It's an easy process to do, but a tougher one to master.
Places And Ways To Use Mercury Glass
Since it is such a show stopper, you can really let your imagination run wild with mercury glass and how and when you use it. To get you started, here are a few ideas:
Pair it with modern decor
There's a great tension between a simple and clean modern look and mercury glass. The silver tone of the glass plays really well with the modern design, but the aging, cracking, and coloration changes of the glass add a rustic and homey tone to it without going too far. It personalizes modern motifs, which can feel a bit sterile without some of these touches.
Use it with country chic (or cottage chic) styles
This is a great pairing. Country chic is a very popular (and lasting) look, and mercury glass has the rustic decor feel that just fits the style. You can go as far as mercury glass door knobs to play up the design.
Ring in the holidays with mercury glass Christmas decorations
The silvery shine of mercury glass really adds to the beauty of the holiday season. In fact, you'll find many mercury glass ornaments and Christmas decorations out there. It's Christmas decor that can inspire, and it's a sure fire way to make your vintage Christmas look ring true.
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Mercury Glass Prices
Antique mercury glass pieces are collector's items and can cost up to hundreds of dollars. It's a popular thing to collect, and if you are inspired to go for it, these pieces are truly beautiful.
Faux mercury glass pieces that look very much like the real thing are perfect for modern decor, and their prices are more in line with other contemporary pieces. Smaller mercury glass pieces (like small candle holders and door knobs) may cost less than $10 while larger pieces (lamps and large vases) may cost $50 or more.
Mercury glass can give you that blast of bling to your home decor in a very stylish and contemporary way. You'll love the feel it brings to any room or occasion. In fact, it's got a real sense of fashion that is sure to inspire both you and your guests. That's no small feat for home decor.