decorative glass bottle
"Les trois amours." Art et Industrie, Oct. 1929, 43.
“Utilisées comme lampes, elles donnent des effets de transparence particulièrement agrèables.” (Used as lamps, the bottles emit a particularly pleasant transparency.” Art et Industrie, Oct. 1929, 43.

As Carolyn Burke explains in her biography of Loy, due to the lack of financial assets needed to start a business, Loy spent many of her Sundays at the Marché aux Puces de Saint-Ouen, a popular flea market in Paris. During many of these expeditions, she developed a fascination in old liquor bottles of varying shapes and sizes. Loy began collecting these bottles with the hope that “once she had enough, their values would increase” (Burke 338). With the hope of selling them as antiques, Loy manipulated many of the bottles she purchased, cutting “leaf and petal shapes from colored papers [and] layering them to form old-fashioned bouquets” (Burke 339).

photo of a parlor with chandelier
Loy's Parisian apartment
bust figurine
Loy's bottle collection

Loy was also inspired by transforming seemingly everyday objects into functional pieces of art. For example, she reimagined a “new kind of perfume bottle made with glass containers” in which cigarettes were sold (Burke 391). Called “Pipes of Pan,” Loy cut “tubes to various lengths, filled them with colored waters, and tied them with a gold band,” making them “her most marketable design” (Burke 391).

One can see a modern rendering of Loy’s bottles in the form of Etsy’s liquor bottle lights (shown below), which consist of repurposed wine bottles and one-of-a-kind lamps that create a chic and crafty look. Loy’s bottle collection and Etsy’s liquor  bottle lights more broadly reflect the beauty of transforming seemingly everyday items into aesthetically appealing objects that generate the desire to collect and/or consume.

lamp made from glass bottle