Mirrors were used initially as handheld mirrors, adopted by the Celts from the Romans and by the end of the Middle Ages had become quite common throughout Europe. Full length mirrors did not become common until the first century A.D. and since then have been used as much, if not more so, as objects for decoration.
By the time of the Renaissance, Nürnberg and Venice had established outstanding reputations as centers of mirror production, and were most well-known for their quality. From the late 17th century onward, mirrors–and their frames–played an increasingly important part in the decoration of rooms. The early frames were usually of ivory, silver, ebony, or tortoiseshell or were veneered with marquetry of walnut, olive, and laburnum.
These days, you can spend a fortune on mirrors – or find great reproductions at a fraction of the price. But almost everyone has mirrors, and most times they are used more for decor purposes, than as a practical household item. More importantly, even novice and amateur designers know that the perfect placement of a mirror can make an otherwise small space look much more spacious.
I have quite a few decorative mirrors in my home already, but am still fascinated (and tempted) by unique shapes, styles and materials used in mirror creation today. Here are a few pretty cool mirrors from GILT.com today…