Caring for Mirrored Furniture
Mirrored furniture is one of the hallmarks of the Art Deco period, and it is something we specialize in. These beautiful pieces add high elegance to any space, but they require special care to maintain their value and their aesthetic appeal. It isn't too complicated to maintain mirrored furniture, but there are a few tricks. Here is what you'll need to know after your purchase.
Dust is the main enemy of keeping your mirrored pieces looking as good as they did in the 1930s. While you may know the old trick of using newspaper and alcohol to clean a mirror, we suggest investing in some proper microfiber cloths and a non-solvent glass cleaner instead. Microfiber cloths won't scratch the surface of the mirrors, and a non-solvent cleaner will lower the chance of damaging any gilding or wood between the mirrored panels. Art Deco Antiques can advise you on suitable glass cleaners for your pieces.
At least once a week, spray a microfiber cloth with cleaner and wipe each panel carefully. Do not spray the piece directly to avoid damage to gilding or wood. After you're finished, take a clean microfiber cloth and run it over the entire piece.
While these pieces may be very heavy and look strong due to their design elements, care must be taken to ensure that nothing can hit the piece and cause damage. Make sure that your piece cannot get struck by any doors, recliner feet, or objects hanging above them. While mirrored coffee tables exist, it can be a real struggle to keep them safe if you use them day-to-day.
If your piece does develop chips or cracks, then speak with our restoration specialists for advice on how to repair your piece.
Sunlight and humidity
Another enemy of mirrors is sunlight and humidity. Direct sunlight is bad for most antiques to begin with, but humidity can be its own challenge. Excessive humidity will cause the mirrored surface to darken from oxidation, and can be difficult to reverse. If you have a piece meant for a bathroom this may be something you will have to live with. On the other hand, if a room is excessively dry it can cause the mirror finish to crack, especially if sunlight is involved.
Oxidation is also why you should never place anything hot on a mirrored surface. The heat can cause condensation on the other side of the mirror, which will oxidize the metal. Also, there is a possibility of glass fracturing due to heat stress. Always use coasters and placemats to protect your piece.
Children and pets
Art deco furniture with mirrors don't mix well with children and pets. Mirrors are a magnet for children's hands and pets will have no qualms about leaving paw prints all over your furniture. If your grandchildren are coming to visit, it may be wise to throw a quilt over your furniture.
A mirrored piece can be a focal point for an entire room. Follow these tips to protect your investment so it can last for decades to come.