Carnival glass is moulded or pressed glass. It gets its iridescent sheen from the application of metallic salts while the glass is still hot from the pressing. A final firing of the glass brings out the iridescent properties of the salts, giving carnival glass the distinct shine it is known for.
Both functional and ornamental objects were produced in the carnival finish and patterns ranged from simple through geometric and 'cut' styles to pictorial and figurative. A wide range of colours and colour combinations were used but the most common colours accounted for a large proportion of output, so scarce colours can today command very high prices on the collector market.
Carnival glass has been known by many other names in the past: aurora glass, dope glass, rainbow glass, taffeta glass, and disparagingly as 'poor man's Tiffany'. Its current name was adopted by collectors in the 1950s from the fact that it was sometimes given as prizes at carnivals, fetes, and fairgrounds. However, that can be misleading as people tend to think that all of it was distributed in this way but evidence suggests that the vast majority of it was purchased by the housewife to brighten up the home at a time when only the well-off could afford bright electric lighting.
At the height of its popularity in the 1920s huge volumes were produced and prices were low enough for the ordinary home to afford.
Orakei Objet is a delightful antique and art store providing excellent collector/stand alone items. The shop interior is thoughtfully organized with new objects to be discovered upon each visit, and the store owner is welcoming as well as helpful. Upon entering the premises, it becomes extremely apparent that they are knowledgeable and passionate in their trade.
Wonderful new Antique and Interiors store in a really accessible location. Items have clearly been carefully selected by the owner who is a stylist. Such an eclectic range of objects to choose for my new house. Love it!
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