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BALL SHADES
 
Victorian oil lamps, banquet lamps, and Gone with the Wind lamps are common types which take ball shades. They originated in the kerosene-burning era of the late 1800's using central draft oil burners and were designed to impress guests. The popularity of these lamps continued well into the advent of electricity and are even today still reproduced in a variety of styles. The appropriate size of a ball shade is determined by its diameter at the widest part of the ball. A rule of thumb is that the diameter of the ball should be equal to, or slightly larger than, the fattest part of the bottom font whether it be metal or glass.

Click the diameter to see ball shades:
8" / 9" / 10" / 11" / 12" / Miniatures / Banquet Lamp Shades
 


Gone With The Wind (GWTW) Lamp at The Antique Lamp Co.


Diagram of a Gone With The Wind Oil Lamp at The Antique Lamp Co.
GONE WITH THE WIND LAMPS: Any lamp with a matching glass shade and font is generically called called a Gone With The Wind  or GWTW. Early oil lamp manufacturers prolifically produced this style of kerosene lamp. It has a removable brass font which sits inside a glass base and has a matching ball shade. Some examples also have a 10" dome or tam-o-shanter shade. Although they are named after the popular Civil War movie in which they are seen, these lamps are actually circa 1880's. Gone With The Wind style lamps made a huge comeback in both size and style in the 1970's but these do not have the removable font insert.

Please be aware that because most of these lamps were hand-painted and one-of-a-kind, it is difficult, if not impossible, to find a replacement shade which will match the base. Since all of the value of the lamp is in having both the matching top and bottom, we often recommend not to purchase a shade that doesn't match exactly.

 

Piano Lamp at The Antique Lamp Co.

←PIANO LAMPS: A circa 1880's tall, adjustable-height floor lamp (left) which takes a ball shade is most typically called a piano or organ lamp, as this was a favored location in the Victorian era home. However, such lamps were typically lightweight so it could easily be moved to other locations as well. Most are a tripod style that was designed to equally distribute the weight. The correct term actually is “extension floor lamp”, as a patented mechanism makes it possible to extend the top by raising and locking it in place. Piano lamps have a removable center draft kerosene font, and they were also often part of a marble-top table.
   
→BANQUET LAMPS: Other styles of lamps take ball shades also, such as Victorian banquet lamps. Banquet lamps are kerosene lamps from the Victorian era, circa 1837 to 1901. They are generally a very ornate, tall lamps that were designed for lighting a banquet table. Their globes were usually etched or art glass and were often much fancier than most others in the house in order to impress guests.
  Diagram of Victorian Banquet Lamp at The Antique Lamp Co.Victorian Banquet Lamp at The Antique Lamp Co.
 

Click HERE to go to ball shade holders

Click the diameter to see ball shades:
8" / 9" / 10" / 11" / 12" / Miniatures / Banquet Lamp Shades

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