Mirrors have come a long way from ancient times when they were made of metals such as bronze. Although powdered pumice stone could be used to polish them, these metal mirrors did not have the fine reflecting surfaces of their modern-day glass counterparts. Nevertheless, people could still see a hazy perception of themselves and if not pleased with what they saw, could make appropriate changes to their appearance.
Today, a type of unique and useful mirror has been around since (rumor has it) since the days of King Louis XIV who enjoyed the symbol of the sun as his personal emblem. And thus, the story goes, began the history of sunburst mirrors. However, a sunburst mirror design probably predates King Louis XIV as the universal sun was worshipped by many cultures and venerated in their décor and other household items. The painter Jan van Eyck in 1434 even portrayed a newly married couple with a background of a bulls-eye convex mirror.
Other antique aficionados contend that the sunburst mirror made its appearance circa the French Revolution when churches, convents and other opulent residences were looted. Among the loot were the gilded aureoles of the sun’s rays that seem to symbolize the halo of the Holy Family and other altar saints. Enterprising antique collectors soon purchased those vacant sunbursts for next to nothing and slipped mirrors into their cavities creating what we know today as a sunburst mirror. After the 1940s, Parisian artisan Line Vautrin knew enough to use plastic for the sunburst mirror frames which concept was ahead of her times technologically.
But whatever the origin, the glamorous convex Sunburst Mirror style comes in countless variations and one article could not attempt to describe all the finishes and designs available nowadays. We do know they can open up a room and add a dramatic touch to any home as their emanating rays and gold or brushed-nickel finishes are still considered a timeless style icon. On bleak cold days, a mirror will refract each precious sunlight ray and with the sunburst mirror you have a stand-in for the sun itself.
Designers serve their own flare for art by using the sunburst mirror design as a “happy sparkle” to living spaces of small to large sizes. Some hang them over other mirrors or above a piece of art. Others use them to dress up a “boring space” as they bring a sense of architecture and reflective surface to any room. They are also appealing above a headboard or over fireplaces where they pick up and play with the flames.
Yes, now that the romantic sunburst mirror has shown us its versatility through the ages it stands in its place somewhere between decoration and art – a timeless beauty for all decorators and lovers of an attractive home, office or spaces of any kind.
How And Where To Buy A Sunburst Mirror
So, you’ve decided to try your hand at home decorating, eh? Yes, the task can be both frustrating and rewarding but not necessarily expensive as long as you know where to purchase your accessories and how to update them if need be.
Hopefully you wouldn’t go for what some Western tourists and businessmen are doing in their quest for unique home furnishings. Seems there have been hundreds of tiger skins seized between 1994 and 2012, but that figure is thought to be a mere fraction of those smuggled. Yes, there is illegal trading of tiger skins in China with a slaughter of one of the world’s most endangered species,” says The Sunday Telegraph of London. No, you don’t have to resort to illegal means to make your home attractive with or without a budget.
The first step is to choose your materials wisely as today there is such variety when it comes to the style in which you decorate your home, including wall furnishings. In your area, what is practical? Would you prefer a decorative wallpaper, a veneer or fabric wall covering? Even basic paint doesn’t have to be so “basic” anymore with the variety of stencils and textures you can achieve with the right tools. Before making your final decision, consider cost, durability of the finish, ease of installation and maintenance time.
The color of your décor choices is also important. Will it harmonize with other features inside the area? Depending on the lightness or darkness of the colors you’ve chosen, you can create a sense of either warmth or coolness. Simply by adding the happy face of a sunburst mirror, any room would seem more sunny and welcoming.
But where would you buy a sunburst mirror or other clocks and wall hangings, etc.? Well, there’s always second-hand stores around town but you can’t always find what you want WHEN you want it. There are your typical department stores like Sears, Dilliards, Macy’s and others which offer sunburst mirrors in various sizes and finishes. Really the distributors who offer these mirrors are endless.
Why not check out some lower-end stores like Tuesday Morning, Big Lots, WalMart, K-Mart and the like? You’d be surprised what nice furnishings they offer at times. And if you are the adventuresome type you could even buy some gold or silver metallic paints and tweak the color to your heart’s content – probably all for under $40.
But if you want a richer look, there are stores online and off which feature mirrors exclusively. One such store is uniquemirrorsonline.com with its seven styles of sunburst mirrors like the Sheridan Flat Piled Clear Mirror, Wilmette Rectangular Art Deco Multi-Facet Rectangle Wall Mirror, Madison Round Antique Silver Mirror, Sheridan Round Flat Piled Clear Mirror, Round Sunburst Wall Mirror, Serenity Round Silver Leaf Mirror, and the Sunburst Round Antique Silver Mirror. Prices there range from $227 U.S. to $1,059 U.S.
Really there are many more mirror stores to choose from. Simply do a Google Search for “sunburst mirrors” and you’ll be able to spend hours deciding on which you love best.
The secret of successful decorating really is good preparation so take the time to prepare your surfaces by making sure your walls are smooth, dry and clean. With a dramatic finish of paint or wallpaper and the added dimension of a beautiful sunburst mirror, you’ll be quite pleased with the time you took to cultivate your home decorating skills.