A single paperweight on a pedestal makes an attractive desk ornament.

How to Display Paperweight Collectibles

by Benna Crawford

Glass paperweights are practical collectibles. They're solid, sturdy and easy to pack as trip souvenirs. Just one, perfectly positioned, can send beams of colored light dancing around a room. They take up very little space and are easy to move around. You can put them up high enough so exploring hands can't reach them, and they come in an endless, imaginative variety. Get creative with a display to keep your eye-catching collection in view.

1. Cuisine and Collectibles

Display your paperweight collection where you can see and enjoy it frequently. Line up glass paperweights along the windowsill in the kitchen where they'll catch the sun by day and glitter in reflected lamplight at night. Dream of that Venetian vacation while you're washing the dishes or chopping vegetables, secure in the knowledge that the short people banging on pots on the floor won't be able to reach your Murano glass paperweights for years. A glass shelf in a kitchen window, just above the cafe curtains, is another safe perch for your prized specimens.

2. Soda Pop and Paperweights

Hunt for old wood soda bottle cases in country antique stores or flea markets -- the ones with the product label burned or stamped on the wood are the most interesting. Hang the case securely on the wall and put one paperweight in each compartment. Train a ceiling gallery spot on the case to feature your collection as a distinctive piece of wall art in a dining room, kitchen, hallway or study.

3. Glass Gallery

Make your own mini-museum with a glass-front cabinet repurposed as a display case for a paperweight collection. Replace wood shelves with tempered glass ones and glue mirror tiles to the back interior of the cabinet. Fasten small bookshelf lights along the inner edges of the cabinet frame. Arrange the collection on the glass shelves where the mirror will double the images and the reflections will sparkle in the light. Best of all, you won't have to dust the paperweights when they're protected inside the windowed cabinet.

4. Set a Stylish Table

Share the wealth at your next dinner party by clustering the pride of your paperweight collection on the table to create the centerpiece. A silver-filigreed mirrored tray will hold several pretty paperweights, flanked by a couple of crystal candlesticks and a miniature crystal vase or two, each holding a single cut flower. Spread the gleam and glitter among all the guests at a large dinner party with a few more paperweights marching down the center of a rectangular table, interspersed with more candlesticks and glass vases. Mount a few of the centerpiece paperweights on clear plastic or gilded metal pedestals to vary the height of the display and make the individual globes more visible.

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