Glass shades are an elegant form of the lamp shade. While the primary use of glass shades is to diffuse the light that is emitted from the lamp, they provide a look of beauty and class as well. Glass shades come in a staggering variety of types. Some of the more common glass shades are Tiffany, Torchiere, Bankers, Chandeliers, Globe, Chimney, Neck less and Lily. These glass shades can be made of regular glass or stained glass among other variations of size, shape, fitting and the type of lamp.
One of the better known glass shades is the Tiffany lamp. These glass shades are made of stained glass using lead or copper bases. These glass shades are done in an art deco style and original versions can be very valuable today. Tiffany glass shades are the most popular of the vintage styles. Another vintage style of glass shades is the Torchiere. Created back in the 1940s and 1950s the Torchiere style was generally a glass floor lamp. Several styles of these glass shades were available such as the dish, Stiffel, reflector waffle. Torchiere glass shades were often embossed with designs.
Cased glass shades are also becoming quite popular. Cased glass shades involve a process where two different layers of different colored glass are fused together at extremely high temperatures to create a very unique glass. These glass shades were very often used in Victorian lamps. Cased glass shades have one color on the inside of the glass shades and another color on the outside of the glass shades. Usually these glass shades come in conical shapes and have a pattern embossed onto it.
Calling chandeliers glass shades is a stretch but in most cases they do fall into the glass shades category. Chandeliers do not exactly diffuse light like typical glass shades, instead they use many reflective facets and surfaces to reflect the light in every direction. Present day chandeliers come in many forms and while traditionally clear glass was used for these glass shades now almost any kind of glass is used.
While these are the types of glass shades that are best known, you do find the lesser known varieties. The bankers type glass shades are the traditional green ones that cast a small area of light. Globe glass shades look just what the sound like and are even called Gone with the Wind lamps because of their appearance in that movie. Chimney glass shades also have a very self explanatory shape. Lily glass shades are shaped like the flower and can be quite extravagant.