Antique and vintage lamps span a broad spectrum, including well known-styles like Victorian and slag glass and leading names like Tiffany, Handel, and Aladdin. Values vary greatly and reproductions abound, so do your homework.
The earliest type of lamp, the oil lamp, was a simplistic vessel with an absorbent wick. These were mass-produced starting in the 19th century. Manufacturers typically made the metal base and burner and bought the glass from another manufacturer.
Between the 1840s and the early 1900s, during the Victorian era, oil lamps and candelabras coexisted with early electric lamps. In 1908, Aladdin Industries Inc. created the Aladdin lamp, an oil lamp so bright that no one was able to find another oil lamp that compared, despite Aladdin's offer of a thousand dollars if they could.
The biggest development in lamps toward the end of the 1800s was the growing popularity of ornate glass lampshades, often with floral imagery. Lamps started to become a decorative, rather than just functional, item. Slag glass (pressed glass with milky stripes), for example, became popular in England and America, and many lamp companies used it to create beautiful lamp shades.
Decorative table and floor lamps reached the height of their popularity in the U.S. in the first two decades of the 20th century, spurred by the success of Tiffany and its Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau competitors, like Handel.
Tiffany and others made bronze and gilt-bronze lamp bases, often simulating plants or tree trunks, and floral or other naturalistic art glass shades with colorful iridescent glass pieces leaded together. Thousands of Tiffany lamps were made, and they're highly collectible today. By the 1920s, many lamp designers had started to shift to Art Deco styles, characterized by angular lines and squared glass or paper shades. Also common were deco figural lamps with stems made to look like people.
Post WWII, mid-century lamps tended to be simpler (Eames), sillier (TV lamps) or groovier (lava lamps). Eames lamps were often made of metal and featured long, narrow, and sometimes wavy stems. Lamps with multiple bulbs and lamps with swiveling necks were also common. So-called TV lamps were also popular in the 1950s. Typically made of ceramic or plaster, these were backlit decorative sculptures created in the shape of animals, people, and plants...
Lava lamps, an icon of the 1960s and 70s, combined heated wax, chemicals, and dyed water to create lava-like imagery. Lava lamps were used more for decoration than for lighting.
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Recent News: Lamps
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Killer attacked girlfriend before stabbing her brother, court hearsgethampshire.co.uk, April 17th
He later ripped a handbag he had given her and smashed an antique lamp that belonged to her grandmother, it is claimed. Morris also broke her crutches when she had a foot injury leaving her housebound, the court heard. His violence culminated in...Read more
Metal detectors share finds, favorite hunting spotsLincoln Journal Star, April 14th
He posts videos on YouTube not only of the wheat pennies (“wheaties”) or, say, an antique lamp base he found but also of a softball-sized mushroom he happened upon along the way. “You really are paying attention to detail,” Schwenke said. “You've gotta ...Read more
Shoppers find treasures at Lakewood Historical Society's Tabletops and Trifles ...The Plain Dealer, April 13th
She posted a photo of a vintage lamp on Facebook to draw attention to the event. "A woman said she 'needed that lamp.' She came and bought it, then posted a photo on her Facebook page later showing why she wanted it. It matched a number of other items ...Read more
The cozy cafe in an old carriageVietNamNet Bridge, April 11th
An antique lamp is used as a decorative item. dalat cafe, cafe in carriage, train, tourism. The cafe also has many old, unique things, such as a gramophone or pictures of trains from around the world. dalat cafe, cafe in carriage, train, tourism. These...Read more
Investigators continue to follow leads in area highway shootingsKansas City Star, April 10th
When the Leawood residents returned March 28 to their townhome, which backs up to College Boulevard near Roe Avenue, they found a bullet on the floor, a hole in a window and a broken antique lamp, according to police reports released Thursday. Police ...Read more
Life & Style: Parisian Style in Palm BeachNantucket Island Inquirer, April 8th
No one will know the side table doesn't have pedigree, but a really good, well-designed antique lamp speaks volumes. And it elevates the table! To say that Worth Avenue is well-manicured is an understatement. It's kind of awesome with its stately palm...Read more
Your Good News: Awards and Honors from Clubs and Organizations Around PolkThe Ledger, April 6th
It is their mission that all 15 vintage lamp posts on Highway 98 will be wrapped in garlands and lights and a large, red bow, as a result of sponsors. Your Good News: Awards and Honors from Clubs and Organizations Around Polk. FitNiche donated hundreds ...Read more
Rainier council to begin search for Taylor's replacementLongview Daily News, April 1st
Taylor, an antique lamp restorer, said she is watching ongoing investigations by the Oregon Department of Justice and the U.S. Internal Revenue Service. The Oregon Department of Justice is investigating the Senior Center's finances, and the IRS, at...Read more