Forgotten Gems: It’s Time to Bring Back Vintage Furniture Coasters

It’s common to find beverage coasters in homes across America. They’re often decorative and can reflect beautiful artwork or scenery from places all over the world. Interestingly, there was a time when vintage furniture coasters were popular. Although they, too, protected furniture, it’s likely not in the way one might expect. Fortunately, we have access to social media platforms, allowing people to share with others some of the cool antique items that have been found hidden in old homes, and what purpose they serve.

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Vintage Furniture Coasters

One of the coolest things about having access to the internet, and social media platforms, is the opportunity to see what kind of forgotten and unique items people find in their basements and attics. One functional antique, vintage furniture coasters, offer more than just aesthetics, they’re also incredibly functional, working to eliminate damage to old furniture.

Butterflies on vintage furniture coasters.
Photo Credit: Etsy

Vintage furniture coasters were typically made from glass and were placed under the legs of furniture to “distribute weight more evenly” and help reduce scratching as furniture can shift from use. The vintage furniture coasters were created for functionality, then enhanced with decorative and elaborate designs. Some have intricately etched glass, while others are made using vibrant colors and patterns.

Sadly, with newer and more functional furniture designs, these beautiful pieces of craftsmanship have become obsolete. However, they’re still popular today among collectors for numerous reasons including their beautiful designs, functionality, and their incredible durability. Vintage furniture coasters can still be found, in good condition, on Ebay or local antique shops.

Moreover, they’re making a comeback in home design, combining modernism with a luxurious hint of nostalgia—intricately designed and handcrafted treasures from days gone by.

Four coasters laid out on a gray background
Photo Credit: Ebay

Illusive History

Little is available online regarding the origins of vintage furniture coasters. However, beverage coasters were created in the late 1800s in Germany using leather, then wood. They were invented to pass cold beverages across the bar easily without spilling. They’ve since been made using several different materials including ceramic, cork oak, and stone and are used to also prevent rings from forming on tables or counters as drinks sweat. Both, beverage and vintage furniture coasters have a similar design and are used to protect furniture, while adding a touch of decor to liven up any room.

Furthermore, these beautiful historic objects can be repurposed into several fun DIY projects. For example, broken pieces of vintage furniture coasters can be used to mosaic larger decorative stepping stones. Meanwhile, those with bright colors can be repurposed to make stained glass art.

Vintage furniture coasters are both versatile and beautiful reminders of the labor invested in creating unique pieces, often by hand.

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