BREAKING NEWS: Two new, retro bathroom sconces — plus a bunch of new porcelain early 20th century — from Rejuvenation

retro bathroom light
Many thanks to reader Christopher, who spotted these two, new retro bathroom sconces just launched for sale at Rejuvenation — the press releases aren’t even out yet, Rejuv confirmed! There are two sizes — please note, I greatly prefer the aesthetics of the top design, the smaller one — the “Starlette” Get it with two sockets, mount it over your bathroom mirror, and you’re ready to rock. The second design, the Stella reads too… bulky in the middle… to me. These are not cheap, however: When I used the configure tool, I get $330 for the Starlette with two sockets. Rejuvenation tells me: The process to make these lights is hand-done… They are working with American vendors — way to go, Rejuv!…and I know they are very focused on quality — hey, you get what you pay for. That said, if you have time to wait it out to find true vintage, you likely could find a similar light cheaper; but sometimes, you just want the room done — and the Starlette sure is purty.

Rejuvenation just confirmed to me that, yes, these are brand spanking new online, and the catalogs ship later this week. Here’s what Rejuvenation says about these lights:

To recreate the unusual glass shades on these fixtures, we enlisted the help of an Indiana manufacturer that specializes in “slumped” glass. This labor-intensive process involves using ceramic and metal molds (into which hot glass “slumps”) to achieve the shades’ aerodynamic shape and frosted appearance.


  • Polished Chrome finish only
  • Opal shade with polished stainless-steel shade trim only
  • Can be mounted horizontally or vertically.

I wasn’t planning on posting surprise news today (Sunday), here are links to additional, new retro-style products coming out this week from Rejuvenation. When I asked, “Anything else that would interest Retro Renovation readers?”, the company emailed me:

Those are the only two MCM pieces this time, but we do have some great new porcelain bath fixtures and lights:



Taking a quick glance — these all have a Steampunk looks to me. And yes, in line with contemporary 2012 trends: They come in gray porcelain (as well as black and white).

UPDATE: Here is a Monday followup from Rejuvenation. I had emailed them immediately to get clarification on the pricing for these fixtures, which as you can see from the initial comments, was confusing on their website. I also asked about the historical precedents for these lights. Tim Wetzel, product design manager, responded promptly:

First, our deep apologies to you and all for erroneous info about the new lighting fixtures.  We just launched a new website a few days ago, and there are numerous bugs our web team is feverishly working to correct.  Presentation of the new products is especially troublesome. Pricing on new products in particular is showing up wrong, and feature descriptions are confusing. To clarify:

Starlette, the smaller of the two bath light fixtures, has two light sockets.  It is priced at $190.

Stella, the larger bath light fixture has three light sockets. It is priced at $290.

The only option on either of these is the type of light socket.  The choice is between standard medium base screw-in, or GU24 socket, which is a pin-base type that we offer as a means to meet strict energy efficiency standards in California.  This option does not affect price.

As with everything we produce, it is based either very closely or is identical – to the degree possible –  to an historical design. We typically have to do minor modifications as needed to make for a compelling design that meets modern quality expectations and to comply with today’s UL standards.  Sometimes we combine features of similar vintage designs.  That was the case with Stella and Starlette.  Attached pictures tell the story.

vintage feldman lighting catalogYou can see the original 1962 Feldman (above) catalog images that were our primary reference.

progress lighting catalog vintage retroWe were also drawn to the angled ends of the shade as shown in the Progress 1960 catalog (above), so we added that feature.

vintage bathroom lighting from moe vintage moe lighting cataloga vintage moe light precedent to the starletteWe also found a very similar example by Moe (above).  That’s the way it often goes—similar contemporary designs made by multiple manufacturers.Both Stella an Starlette have exactly the same shade profile (they are both formed on the same slumping tool) — it’s just that Stella is longer.  In my view Stella is the long and sleek one while Starlette is the squat and chunky one, just by nature of the aspect ratio.  We offer the two not so much for styling differences as to satisfy the needs presented in various spaces.

porcelain bath fixtureAs for our new Dunbar bath hardware line, it too is based on an original design.  Bath hardware is often an extra challenge because original catalog documentation is harder to find, and original examples are very rare.  In the case of this line, we found just one vintage piece, a cup holder, and had to extrapolate design for all the other pieces. Pictures attached of that one piece — above.  What we found appealing was the simplicity of the design, with the very subtle embellishment of the raised ring on the support arm. Steampunk is fascinating style — all about a fantasy merging of retro and modern tech, as an extremely quirky and not necessarily functional style.  To me, Dunbar bath hardware and our new porcelain light family are all pretty much the opposite of that.  All of these would be grouped in our Period Basics collection, based on styles that were very long-lived because of the simple appearance that transcended trends.  While we don’t know the exact source or history of our reference piece for Dunbar, our view is that it’s a style that could date pretty much from any year in the first three decades of the 20th century, and could look quite at home in a very broad range of homes of various styles and eras.

alabax lightingThe porcelain light family was based on a series that was originally made under the Alabax trade name by Pass & Seymour in the late 1920s and early 1930s.  See catalog page on that too.

I hope all of that is of interest.

Tim Wetzel, Product Design Manager, Rejuvenation

Thank you, Tim! I always enjoy hearing from you. I was calling those Dunbars “Steampunk” because they seemed like chunky, industrial/Victoriana to me — a look I associate with steampunk. But hey, I am no steampunk expert, that’s for sure!

  1. Melissa says:

    Do you know, my mother has the light fixture at the very top of the page on the Progress 1960 catalogue? She’s been renting a 60’s pretty-close-to-time-capsule split level house. I’ll have to take some pictures for you all.

  2. John says:

    Yes, sorry, I meant outlets not sockets. Strange, when I went to rejuvenation and looked at the starlette the price came up as $50.00. Guess it was a mistake somehow. DARN!!!

  3. John says:

    Hi Pam, without the sockets the Starlette is only $50.00!! That’s a great price. I think most people would have wall sockets and not need sockets in their light. I know that’s how they used to come but it’s a huge savings without sockets.

      1. Brian says:

        My guess he’s referring to an electrical receptacle (some areas of the country call them sockets) I know my old house had a light over the mirror that you could plug a hair dryer or something into. As far as I could tell you can only get the light with 2 light sockets and $330 is as cheap as they come.

  4. John says:

    Hi Pam,
    These lights are just what i need when I do my mater bathroom retrovation. Just curious, what the heck is Steampunk???Sounds like a music genre!! Hehe

    1. Jordanna says:

      Steampunk is a sort of Neo-Victorian sci-fi aesthetic. Think Jules Verne, Sherlock Holmes, maybe as late period as The Mummy movies with Brendan Fraser.

      It’s part opulent Victorian, part Industrial Victorian, and part Phenomenal Flying Machines.

      I like it, when its not too brown/gray, but I like Victoriana.

      1. pam kueber says:

        I like pretty much all decorating styles! Do you agree with me that the 5 porcelain fixtures are Steampunky?

  5. These are very nice, though I think the shade is a little upscale-looking for my very modest ranch. We have been on the watch for a used form of this style of wall light: the simplest shape with a white-patterned, half-cylinder glass shade. Still, I can check ’em out in person here in Portland and see. Thanks, Pam, and Christopher!

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