Martyn Lawrence-Bullard examines mercury glass pieces priced under $20 at Marshalls. "Mercury glass was invented in the late 19th century, originally by the Spanish colonists in Mexico," he says. "They couldn't afford real silver for the table, so they poured mercury into glass, and it gave the illusion of the table set with sterling silver. It's a wonderful decorative element, and a pair of these on a dining table, either filled with candles or tightly packed with red roses, add instant glamor at the extremely unglamorous price of $9.99. They are a steal, but you don't need to steal them they're so affordable."
Katie Falkenberg / For The Times
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