Although it can be said that every type of decor has a function, some items do more than act as beautiful works of art. Take decorative chairs and sculptural tables for example. These items are decor yet they are also meant to be used for seating and serving meals. If we like, we can just use them to decorate the house but they were also made for another purpose. Other types of functional decor include lamps, vases, clocks, and anything that can be used for more than just being put on display.
Since they are meant to reflect their surroundings, mirrors also fall into this category. The function might be one that is decidedly “hands off” but it is a function nonetheless, and one that can help extend the dimensions of a room by way of illusion. This and other interesting abilities of mirrors have made them coveted devices since the first ones were made around two thousand years ago. Before then, people hoping to see their own reflection probably looked into the calm waters of a vase or basin.
The first known mirrors were made of polished metal and stone, and eventually evolved into pieces of glass that used gold and other metals as a reflective backing. During the Renaissance, Venetian glass makers developed techniques for making high quality mirrors (considered to be highly valued luxury items) but the modern day mirror that uses silver backing didn’t appear until the 19th century. In present times, such modern, silver-backed mirrors are common, abundant, and available for a tiny fraction of the price that was paid by royalty and their courtesans for similar mirrors during the 17th century.
Advances in mirror making technology have also resulted in a wide selection of artistic and creative mirrors that can act as fine, functional decor. Such mirrors can be used to work with other types of decor in more than one way. For example, Egyptian-themed mirrors like the Wadjet Egyptian Wall Mirror with Cobra Sconces are an excellent addition for rooms, hallways, or homes that feature other forms of Egyptian art, whereas the Peacock Dreams Mirrored Wall Sculpture works well in rooms that feature Victorian and Art Deco items.
The reflective nature of a mirror can also be used to highlight the beauty of sculptures, floral arrangements, and other types of decor in a room or hallway. Place the fantastic Royal Baroque Mirror in front of or across the room from exquisite decor, and we can further showcase its beauty while decorating with a beautiful hardwood antique replica. This is also why a high quality mirror works well in a hallway that features sconces and decorative lighting, especially candles. Place the mirror where it can best reflect the candle or other light source and it will help with lighting as well as lend a creative touch to the hallway.
When putting a mirror on display, we should also remember that mirrors were first and foremost, meant to be looked at. A small mirror just past the front door, and especially near key and coat hooks, will be much appreciated by guests. Using a creative, decorative looking glass like the Lady of the Lake Art Deco Wall Mirror, or the striking Twin Fairies Mirrored Wall Sculpture can also act as an opportunity to make a fine first impression. Further down the hall, or in other rooms, we can use larger mirrors to keep up with the good impressions. These can take the form of anything from classic antique replicas to something along the lines of the exquisite Madame Antoinette Ebony Salon Mirror.
See a beautiful selection of high quality, creative mirrors at Design Toscano.