Sometimes the individual pieces are more than equal to the sum of their parts.
Recently I found this pair of Tiffany glass shields for wall sconces (think of theses as the lamp shades for the sconces) at Rago Auctions in New Jersey. Some would pass them by because they are missing their original metal fittings BUT I think that actually gives them the opportunity to be used in a new and more modern way. I would never suggest buying and separating the glass from the fittings, but for better or worse, someone else has already done this and has liberated my conscience.
While these sconces probably once hung in the hall of an arts and crafts home, today I could adapt them for the same use, but in a much more minimalist space where they could serve as a decorative focal point. They could also be adapted as shades for short candles. In both cases, the look could be very midcentury or contemporary, depending on the rest of the surrounding elements in the room. Imagine the fabulous warm glow from the glass curtain shimmering while the turtleback amber center glows with that signature Tiffany iridescence. WOW! A little creativity can certainly go a LONG way.
image credits: © Rago. Lot 126, Tiffany Studios, pair of sconce shields, c. 1910. Estimate: $4,000-5,000. Sold in the 20th Century Design Auction, 25 February 2012.