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This nighlight features a lithophane mounted on a durable night light socket with an on-off rocker switch. A lithophane is a piece of fine translucent porcelain made using a lost art from the 1800's. When lit from behind, the light shining through the different thicknesses of the porcelain magically causes a highly detailed image to appear on the front. The relief of the carving gives the illuminated image a 3 dimensional quality when seen in person. Pictures do not do these nightlights justice.


To make them, an artisan carves the image into wax,  then takes a plaster mold of this engraving. Fine porcelain clay is cast into this mold, then kiln fired to 2300 degrees F to achieve the final product's translucency and durability. The artist hand-applies a ceramic underglaze coloring to the back of the porcelain, and then kiln fires it again to fuse the color permanently to the porcelain. Because it is kiln fired onto the porcelain, the color will never fade or discolor. The color doesn't look like much until the light is lit, but when the light is on, color gently diffuses through the porcelain adding an ethereal  beauty to the piece.


Lithophanes were invented in France in 1827, and were popular throughout Europe till the early 1900's. They mysteriously faded from popularity with the advent of electricity, which is ironic as they look even more beautiful with electric light than with candles. The artists who make these fine nightlights first started making them 32 years ago by reproducing the antique ones. Eventually they learned how to engrave their own originals, and this has been their specialty ever since. 


Lithophanes are truly a beautiful and practical piece of art to be used and enjoyed daily for year after year!  Approximate size is . 5 inches tall and 3.5 inches wide.  Uses one 7W bulb which is included, along with a brief history of the art, all in an attractive, sturdy box.

Cardinals Night Light

  • Every nightlight is a unique, handcrafted work of art. Natural variations make every item a masterpiece of its own. 

    This item ships from Illinois within two business days of order placement. Please allow appropriate time for delivery to your requested destination. We generally ship via UPS, but reserve the right to use which ever carrier we believe is the best for the shipment.

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