Katy Elliott

A daily design journal about new england life, home decorating resources, and renovating a 257-year-old house in Marblehead, MA.

Historic Purple Window Panes

Posted on | March 8, 2011 | 7 Comments

One of my lovely readers (thanks Ginger!) pointed out my new amethyst glass lamps reminded her of old crystal doorknobs with the manganese in them that turn violet over decades in the sun. In Boston’s Beacon Hill neighborhood old window panes can be spotted in this lovely amethyst hue too. The hued panes were originally created by accident around 1800-30. The excess of manganese oxide in the glass caused the window panes to turn purple overtime. Above a shot I took of a window in Beacon Hill back in 2008. How lovely to think my new lamps could be a reflection of this gorgeous historic glass.

Related Posts:
Amethyst Glass Lamp
Afternoon in Beacon Hill
Holiday Doors In Beacon Hill

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7 Responses to “Historic Purple Window Panes”

  1. amy good house
    March 8th, 2011 @ 12:42 pm

    Thanks for the lesson – I’ve seen the old purple glass doorknobs and thought they were that way on purpose. Seriously, a happy accident!


  2. Susan
    March 8th, 2011 @ 7:33 pm

    I have a collection of old bottles that have turned purple due to the manganese…why didn’t I think to mention that…duh. ;)


  3. Dina
    March 10th, 2011 @ 5:08 pm

    I’ve never seen purple windows before … its really quite lovely!


  4. Steve
    March 10th, 2011 @ 9:45 pm

    That was a pretty astute association. Love the lights!


  5. quintessence
    March 11th, 2011 @ 8:50 pm

    SO interesting – had no idea!! And btw – I think I’m using Vert de Terre for my office as well but for the walls with the warm white trim!


  6. Katy Elliott
    March 13th, 2011 @ 5:38 pm

    Cool, right? Love Verte de Terre Quintessence!


  7. Elizabeth Schenck
    July 24th, 2012 @ 7:38 pm



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