Antique Venetian mirror origins date back to the Renaissance, a time when Venice already stood out in this and other skills related to working with glass.
In the Venetian tradition, the mirrors have been an object of practical utility, and a special decorative element.
PHOTO: Antique Venetian mirror from the 17th century.
If you are looking for Venetian mirrors of special beauty, look for products that have been made since 1500, when the golden age of glassmaking and mirror production in Venice began.
Their fame is so great, in fact, that it is said that you have not seen your true reflection until you’ve seen yourself in a Venetian mirror.
The current production of Venetian glass starts from the mid-15th century, when Murano crystals were invented.
This glass was so clear, transparent, and colorless, that it looked like a rock crystal.
Only a few decades later, thanks to the efforts by Venetian Vincenzo Rador, the modern production of Venetian mirrors in large scale was started.
Rador devised a modern process of smoothing and polishing of the glass plates, allowing for a perfectly even surface.
Venetian mirrors have historically been of exceptional quality, with the profession, Specchieri, were renowned artists with a strong creative characteristics.
Thanks to the mirrormakers efforts, new techniques of decoration were invented, to beautify and enrich the mirrors from other products in the home.
These innovations included engravings with a diamond tip, application of grinded mirror frames, reproductions of flowers and geometric figures, while other mirrors were decorated with paintings.
Also the Venetian mirror frames in wood were lacquered and decorated with gold or silver as required by the taste of the times.
Modern craftsmanship of the ancient Venetian Specchieri is still in use in Murano glassmaking, creating objects of great beauty and class.
Venetian mirrors are typically elaborate special objects, embellished with gilded frames, antique bands, friezes in warm silver, using only the finest examples of Murano glass.
Range of mirrors on sale today include classic mirrors, Venetian mirrors, and limited editions of mirrors in Murano glass.
Each mirror is made unique by the decorations and applications created by each master glassmaker personally, enhancing the product without affecting its functionality.
In the early 10th century, one of the famous Venetian glassmakers, Roman Tosi, left his job as a master glassmaker, and dedicated his life to the development to the art of Venetian mirrors.
His skills and passion have been handed down through generations to the present day, a blend of old traditions and modern fresh talent.
This has led to the current day Fratelli Tosi, one of the most famous mirror manufacturers in Italy and Venice.
Their mirrors are have character and are distinguished in the market for their quality of manufacturing, including use of pure silver, and for the skill and precision of the cuts and finishes, all done by hand.
Their product line is a the remarkable display of brilliant colors and extraordinary care during the final assembly.
Fratelli Tosi is also known for their production of beautiful gifts and home furnishings, and, upon request, their services extend to custom designs, always combining tradition and innovation.