Shiny-Brite ornaments are a perfect example of Mid-Century Christmas decorations. The great ad, above, is from 1966.
These ornaments date back a little earlier, though. The first Shiny-Brite ornaments were made in 1937 by Max Eckhardt. He worked with the Corning Glass Company to produce them. These ornaments were originally sold at Woolworth dime stores.
Shiny-Brites were popular during the 1940's - World War II vintage - because they were American made. The 1940's box top featured Santa Claus shaking hands with Uncle Sam.
The ornaments were originally manufactured in New Jersey. They were sprayed inside with silver nitrate and then they were lacquered so they truly had a shiny and bright appearance!
Not all vintage glass ornaments are Shiny-Brites. You will recognize them by the Shiny Brite name on the metal ornament capper. During World War II this capper was made of cardboard because of war time manufacturing restrictions.
Here is a glimpse of a 1950's box of Shiny-Brites:
This 1956 Sears catalog page features Shiny-Brites galore. The variety of designs was fabulous -- balls, tear drop shapes, bell shapes, indents, birds, and more!
The company stopped production in the 1970's. However, in recent years Christopher Radko has started producing Shiny-Brite ornaments, and his selection is always lovely.
Do you remember Shiny-Brite ornaments? Were there any of these beauties on your childhood Christmas tree? I would love to hear from you in the comments, below.