A History of Shower Door Design

A History of Shower Door Design

Showers are now part of our lives but someone, somewhere had to develop the prototype.  We suppose the first shower was a waterfall in the wilderness.  So, how did we evolve from that earliest layer of showering to the sophisticated options we see today?

A history of shower door design will reveal some of the key benchmarks along the way.  Let’s explore shower door design history!

The evolution of safety glass

The glass we see in windows is not the glass used to create shower doors.  Sensitive to temperature and easily shattered, it isn’t up to the challenge.  So, in 1903, French scientist Edouard Benedictus invented what we know today as safety glass.

Benedictus’ invention combined glass with cellulose nitrate, which enhanced the safety of all manner of products from cars to cookware.

Between 1900 and 1910, more formulas for shatterproof glass were developed.  An Austria chemist came up with tempered glass during this period.

In the meantime, Benedictus added to his laurels by realizing that objects could be made more durable by combining polyvinyl butyral with two coatings of glass.  But it was to be many years before this material was employed in the creation of a shower stall.

The glass shower is born

Fast forward to 1963, when a company in Ohio became a first mover in producing shower stalls with see-through doors and walls, using the Austrian chemist’s tempered glass discovery.

500% tougher than the glass found in windows, tempered glass showers were framed.

As time went by, the shower stall began to evolve and sliding and swinging doors became available.  Consumers liked the practicality of this emerging novelty, which ended the danger of slippery floors and made cleaning easier.

But here’s where the design element of shower stalls became paramount.  People wanted the luxury and beauty of glass in their homes’ bathrooms.

Hello, frameless!

In 1970, design was all about the future.  Sleek, sophisticated lines were all the rage, so frameless shower stalls and doors began to penetrate the market.  Because of the lack of fixtures, consumers were drawn to the simplicity of these new-generation products.

And in the crucible of the seismic design shift experienced in the 1970s, the modern incarnation of the glass shower was born.

From waterfalls to contemporary chic, the history of shower door design is a noble one.  Bringing consumers design excellence and practicality, the glass shower is today one of the most sought-after amenities in the real estate market.

AGM – the glass people

A history of shower door design has offered a brief walk through the evolution of the glass shower door.  And in 2019, you’ll find the most shining examples of the form with Accurate Glass & Mirror.

We’re New Jersey’s leading glass and shower company, bringing you first-in-class expertise and customization in glass design for the home and office.

Whether you’re seeking a state-of-the-art glass shower stall, or a monumental custom mirror, AGM has the expertise and technology to realize your vision to the letter.

Ready to explore the 21st Century shower?  Contact us!

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