I decided to start a new series here at Bliss on a Budget-taking common items found at thrift stores and showing you some ways to make them over. A new beginning, as it were. And I chose to start with a very common & inexpensive find- a mirror. This mirror was either part of a headboard or part of a dresser set and I chose it out of a stack of them. I paid $4.99 for it, which is pretty good for the size of mirror- 36 inches wide and 32 inches tall. I’m going to show you how to inexpensively add a little flair, a little personality to something so basic. And what’s great is that this project can be personalized easily to fit your own style.
- Black Acrylic Paint
- Silver Acrylic Paint
- Mod Podge
So I began with a very basic mirror framed with a light caramel colored wood. There’s nothing wrong with it, its just a little plain, a little dated. The first thing I did was sand the wood to rough up the finish , then wiped down the frame so there was no dust or anything left. I didn’t worry about the mirror itself just yet. And don’t worry about sanding in all the little grooves, you will just drive yourself crazy! We just want to rough up the surface to give the primer something to adhere to.
Next, I taped off along the edge of the mirror to keep paint & primer from splattering on it, primed the frame and painted it with black acrylic paint. Lookin’ better already. But it still needed something, I wanted to play up those ridges and the corner squares. So I grabbed some metallic silver acrylic paint, smeared some on my finger, and ran it up and down the frame. This way the paint is only applied to the uppermost parts of the frame, and does not get into the ridges, so it highlights the pattern. Now, the pattern on the frame wasn’t complicated and I probably could have used a brush. But apparently I miss finger painting. Whatevs. I had fun, and isn’t that the point? 😉
After the paint had dried I peeled up the tape and cleaned the mirror surface with vinegar and water, making sure there was no gunk or dust on my work surface.
Now comes the fun part. I really love Indian and Moroccan inspired…well, everything. (Duh, I think I say that every time) I love the intricate patterns and motifs that decorate many of their objects and homes, and I wanted to add a little of that intricacy without a lot of work, and do it in a way that anyone could replicate no matter their artistic ability. Enter the magic ingredient- lace! Have you checked out the lace section in your local JoAnn’s or craft store? There is a crazy amount of options, something for everyone. And though I used black, they have lots of color options, and if you can’t find a color you want, you can spray paint lace! But that’s a post for another day.
The amount of lace you need is dependent upon the size of your mirror. Measure the perimeter of your mirror-not the frame- and give yourself a little extra just in case. I used 4 yards for this mirror @ $2.49 a yard, plus a 40% off coupon at JoAnn’s and I had a little left over. If you do not have a lace section at your local craft store, Amazon has some great affordable options.
So measure lace for each individual side and cut your lengths accordingly. Then grab some Mod Podge and apply it to your lace. I laid my lace, one side at a time, on a piece of scrap cardboard and applied it fairly thickly with a brush, but you could also pour a little Mod Podge in a bowl, dip your lace in, and squeegee off the excess by pulling it between your fingers. Then lay it flat on your mirror, press it down to make sure it will adhere, and wait for it to dry! What’s great it that it will dry clear! Now if you slide the lace around on the mirror you might be able to see some of the Mod Podge after it dries. Its clear but those spots are a little distorted. This happened in a couple spots on my mirror, but with the intricacies of the lace, you really don’t notice.
And that’s it! A great way to dress up a plain mirror and add some personality to it, simply and inexpensively. My kind of project! And I love that this project can be done by anyone regardless of how artistic they are. Look for more posts in my New Beginnings Series coming soon!
Until then, have fun! Go nuts! Get messy! Amazing things can happen when you do! XO- Caroline
P.S. Here are the fun parties I link to!