Monday, December 3, 2012

12 Days of Christmas Give Away Day #3: Pottery Barn Mercury Glass Cachepot

UPDATE: DAY #3 Give Away Winner is LAUREN BROWN from OKC! Congrats Lauren! Thanks for entering!!! I'll PM you.

Day #3's Give Away is a Pottery Barn Mercury Glass Cachepot. (5" diameter, 4.5" high).

Where do I start? I love PB....always have.  I love Mercury's shiny and looks vintage even if you just bought it at Pottery Barn. And I love cachepots. Wait, what is a cachepot, you say? Literally, in french, it is a hiding pot. It is an ornamental pot, container, etc. Many originally, were used for flowerpots or large candle votives.

I'm sure you've seen A TON of mercury glass items all over the place now and days. Reproductions have been hot for the past couple of first reemerging around Christmas time in ornaments and candle sticks and over the past year, mainstream stores have incorporated some sort of mercury glass look into at least one of their collections. You see it a lot, don't you? But don't be concerned about it containing Mercury. Its just a term, not an ingredient.

Mercury Glass has been around for hundreds of years. It was known as "false silver" because it was more affordable than having a real silver object but gave the look of silver. Original mercury glass pieces were made by applying a thin layer of liquid silver to glass and the silver was in-cased in a double wall of glass, protecting it from either side. This was also the technique used to make early mirrors. Mercury was used in mirrors but not in table wear. (Good thing).  If you are curious about collecting the real thing, or have seen a mercury glass object at an antique store, the way to distinguish it from a new reproduction is to look at the bottom of the item.  Real mercury glass has a blown bottom and will not have a flat bottom.  All of the new reproductions are mass produced and will have a flat bottom, thus not being hand blown. Nor will there be a double wall; typically the new version is single walled and thus much lighter in weight than the older, thicker, valuable originals.

So, the PB cachepot above can be yours! Review contest rules here.
But if you're in love with the look, don't despair...there are so many options out there that will fit your style and budget. Check it out:
Alston Mercury Glass Cachepot
PB Alston Mercury Glass

Detailed View
West End Mercury Glass Vases
Dotted Mercury Hurricanes
West End Hobnail Mercury Glass Hurricanes
Bethany Accent Lamp
Ballard Designs Mercury Glass Lamp
The vase below is a fantastic example of legit Antique Mercury Glass. You can see the thick, double wall of glass at the top.
Antique Mercury Glass Vase circa 1900-1940

And if authenticity isn't a worry for you, I'll have an easy Mercury Glass DIY coming tomorrow!
BUT FIRST, Comment, share, pin to win the PB Cachepot at the top that started this whole discussion!


  1. Love the hobnail vases from West Elm!!! I should have picked your decorating brain more when I was in Tulsa!!!

    1. I love these from West Elm, too! We should have gotten together more...I miss you! But glad we get to pretend we still see each other and 'see' each other here! :) THANK YOU!

  2. Did you see that West Elm has a sale on its mercury glass collection right now?!? Good timing!

    1. I did :) and I had to stop myself from buying some as teacher gifts. There are a few that are pretty reasonable and I like how they aren't overly Victorian but sort of sleek. I'm sort of all about not paying full price for things, too!!!