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Fake vs Real: How to spot a fake antique mirror from a real one?

Antique framed mirrors can cost a pretty penny. Since the 17th century, mirrors have held a place as status symbols. Their rarity and high cost meant that only nobility and affluent households could possess them. Consequently, most antique mirrors exhibit intricate carvings and gilded finishes – all emblematic of a luxurious lifestyle.⁠

So, if you aspire to own a piece of history with a genuine antique mirror, how can you discern whether an item is truly antique?⁠

Here are some key factors to consider when assessing the authenticity of a mirror:⁠

Mirror Frame: Anticipate signs of aging and wear, even in well-preserved frames. A nearly flawless surface may indicate that the item is not an antique. Authentic antiques often display natural darkening of the wood, evidence of staining, and minor chipping. Moreover, antique mirrors typically feature wooden backs.⁠

Craftsmanship: The finish of an antique picture frame is typically achieved through manual work. Therefore, if the frame’s finish appears consistently uniform, it is likely not an antique.⁠

Glass Characteristics: As glass production techniques were less advanced in the past, you should anticipate imperfections in antique mirrors. These imperfections may manifest as a slightly undulating surface or air bubbles trapped within the glass. If the mirror employs a thin sheet coated with mercury, inspect it for cloudy areas and look for signs of mild greying or yellowing on the inner surface of the mirror glass. The spots or mottled patches should not be too uniform.⁠

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Glass Hue: Modern mirror glass typically appears colorless, whereas antique glass tends to develop a grayish or yellowish tint over time.⁠

Another crucial measure to ensure the authenticity of your mirror is to purchase exclusively from a reputable source. This is a service we are more than willing to provide.⁠

For additional inspiration, please explore our Instagram account @franse_spiegels.

Feel free to reach out to us for assistance in discovering your ideal antique mirror.⁠

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