I always like to see mirrors in a home, not because I am particularly vain but because it adds light to a room and dimension to a wall. Of course not just any mirror will do in a vintage home! It really needs to be a vintage/antique mirror for the quality of the glass, the beautiful beveled edges or the sumptuous colours and gorgeous designs of the frame/surround. As I have often said before (and no doubt will have to say again) it can be hard to part with some of the stock we find for Vintage Lifestyle. These two mirrors, found at a recent fair, are a great example of that.
1930's Barbola mirror, quality, thick bevelled original glass, pretty shape, with a charming collection of brightly coloured flowers along the top. When I hung this on the wall to photograph it I instantly fell in love with it. It really did add something very special to that corner of the room and was so striking. The colours are so clear and bright and seriously vintage.
There are alot of modern "barbola style" mirrors available and sometimes the copies are pretty good if you don't know what to look for. Even if you do, it can still sometimes be difficult to tell an original from a reproduction as they are often reproduced with "wear". Look at the detail closely, check the quality of the flowers (If they are too smooth or "perfect" it is most likely a repro.
Genuine Barbola "paste" shrinks a bit with age so the "cracks" you see on the flowers are a good sign of age and are acceptable. Almost always the colours should be bright and clear, not really dull or muted as though they had been wiped over with an ageing wax. As with most things in life, there are exceptions to the rules so be careful!
The other mirror I wanted to show you is this late 40's /very early 50's free standing mirror.
It has the most wonderful handpainted "frame" decorated with sweet florals, faded gold edging and pretty carved gilt ornamentaion at the top and in the corners.
Again, the glass is original and beveled. It has a painted iron stand on the back which makes it very stable.
The artists name is printed at the bottom, "B. Spencer".
If either of these takes your fancy then pop on over to Vintage Lifestyle and visit the New Arrivals.