Aladdin Lamp Shades and AccessoriesBy Mark Chervenka
Aladdin Lamp Shades
Most people associate the name Aladdin only with glass lamps. This may explain why many of us know of reproduction Aladdin lamps but may not know about reproduction Aladdin accessories. This article will discuss some of the less well known Aladdin reproductions including advertising pieces and glass and paper shades.
Dealer Signs--Store Displays
Interest in Aladdin lamps has built up a demand for almost anything related to the lamp's history. This includes new lamp brochures, posters and signs, such as the two new pieces shown in Figs. 1 and 2.
The new $1 Dollar Allowance sign (Fig. 1) is 10 3/4" wide by 16 inches high. It is printed on white stock in two colors: one color is a red leaning towards orange, the other is black. Similar colors are used in the new Aladdinize sign (Fig 2). It is printed in orange, yellow and black ink also on white stock. The size is about the same too, measuring 11 1/4" wide by 18" high.
The paper used in the new signs is heavy, but not stiff; it can easily be rolled up. These samples were purchased recently, but both signs have been available since about 1974. Under long wave black light, the new white paper flouresces purple-blue; the orange and yellow inks also glow brightly.
Parchment and Paper Shades
New 'parchment' shades are another example of non-glass Aladdin reproductions (Fig. 3). The new 14" shades are available in seven old patterns: Sailing Ships (shown), Fox & Hounds, Log Cabin, Wagon Train West, Coach & Four, Ducks and Lake (Flying Ducks). Original shades were made of a highly translucent material Aladdin named Whip-o-Lite. New shades are made of only stiff paper. As a result, new shades are much more opaque -- that is the new paper shades don't let as much light through as the old original genuine parchment shades.
Once you handle an original parchment shade, the difference is quite obvious. But until you can, here's a good test (see illustration in Figs.4- 5 above). Hold the shade up to a source of light-- a lightbulb, lamp, ceiling fixture, sunny window or a strong flashlight. Now place your hand inside the shade touching the side of the shade nearest your face. If your hand creates a distinct dark shadow, it is very likely an old parchment shade. If you see just a small indistinct patch of shadow or no shadow at all, it's probably the new more opaque paper shade.
There are many new Aladdin-styled glass shades currently available. Illustrations of three of the most common new shades–models 201, 401 and 501–are shown here alongside old originals.
Original 401 shades have a 8 3/4" dia. bottom fitter rim; new shades have 9 3/4" dia. bottom fitter rim.