DIY Mirror Wall Art

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This is a project that has been in progress even longer than the tiling has, if you believe it. I started it last summer, when we were just finishing painting the cabinet doors for our guest bathroom. I didn’t finish it until yesterday… so… yeah. After finding an unbelievable deal on some bright green paint at Lowe’s (only $5 for a gallon!) I decided that green would be the theme for the guest bedroom. I’m pretty happy with this color, because it’s really gender neutral. Our awesome sister-in-law, Jess, will be coming to stay with us this fall because our house is about an hour closer to her school than where she’s currently staying, so she’ll get first claim on the guest bedroom. Our refinished guest bathroom as well, actually.

But eventually, we’ll have a child in this room, and that’s one of the reasons I love this bright green color. It can mix with so many colors to give it a totally different feel. It can stay neutral by mixing it with a light grey (what we’ll probably do for now), but it can become cute and girly when mixed with a powder pink, more fun and masculine when mixed with a darker blue or teal, and neutral but bold if mixed with a dark, chocolate brown. It really has so much potential.

But I digress. Mirror project! So, I’ve seen these sunburst type mirror products pretty much everywhere and I really like them. But, I’m cheap, and I was like, “I bet I could make something like that. And, more in a style that I like.” Luckily, I had some dowels hanging around, because really, who doesn’t? And even more luckily, I had just finished my modern dresser project and had become the proud owner of some awkward trim pieces that I removed and had no idea what to do with. After a quick trip to Joann, to whom I owe the success of so many of my little experiments, I was ready to start. So I did.

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First, I had Matt cut some of the trim pieces down to size for me. I’m only slightly ashamed to say that I was too frightened to do it myself on these tiny pieces of wood.

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Then I did a sort of dry run with just the wood pieces to be sure that the sizes were good together.

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Then I added my mirrors from Joann Fabrics. It was pretty inexpensive to get all of these mirrors. Especially if you have the Joann app on your phone which almost always has a 40% off coupon or something for you to use.

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There were a couple of things that I wasn’t crazy about with this dry run, but overall it was good. The arrangement of the mirrors wasn’t quite right here, and something else was bothering me, but I figured I’d just deal with it later. The wooden pieces were great so I wanted to get painting. So I did.

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Okay, I was already so excited about what this was going to look like. But, I was not to see that finished result anytime soon. Unfortunately, the next day when Matt was on his way home from work, a horrible hail storm hit our town. So I had to gather everything from this project and quickly shove it onto the shelves in the garage so that he could get the car in and out of the barrage. Then manic projects in October (laying concrete, tiling, building a table) put this project out of my mind completely. Cut to six months later…

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And I’m ready to start working on it again! You may notice those make-your-own christmas ornaments. They may even seem horribly out of place to you. Well that’s because you have no vision! Or you’re not as cheap as me. Because they were clearanced and only like 50¢ a piece. So, they are what I chose to use to attach all of the wooden pieces to, and the large center mirror.

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A quick dry run of how it would work before I started glueing willy-nilly. I highly recommend dry runs in everything you do in life.

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Then I was ready to go ahead and start glueing everything in place.

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My trusty (and amazing smelling) Warm Amber candle from Target worked as a weight for me in it’s heavy ceramic bowl… thing.

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After the wooden pieces had set for 24 hours, I went ahead and glued the front piece on as well. Then it was time for me to attach the mirrors. I did another dry run, which I don’t have a photo of, and Matt pointed out some things that would help. First, the mirrors looked a little odd because there was no border. This was awesome, because using a sharpie to color in the edges made a huge difference in the look of the piece. He also thought that the dowels weren’t getting enough love. They were too drowned out by everything going on with the dresser trim pieces. So, I ended up going out to Joann again and picking up some slightly larger mirrors to add to the end of the dowels. I ended up with a 7″ mirror for the center, six 2″ mirrors, six 3″ mirrors and eighteen 1″ mirrors.

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And voila! So much better. This was after everything was glued down. I had the project sitting on the bed as I got ready to attach 3M strips to the ends of all of the dresser trim pieces except the bottom one. Then I stepped up on the bed to clean the wall.

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And this happened. Stupid stretchy pants getting stuck on the project and breaking it apart…. *grumble grumble* But I was able to see that the wood glue had worked very well, except on the areas where there was paint on the dowels, which is completely expected. I’m glad it happened because it was better then than when somebody was sleeping under it. So I stuck everything back together with my trusty glue gun.

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And everything was good again. And it seems to be holding up fine now. So many fingerprints. I cleaned all of my mirrors right before I decided to color in the edges with a Sharpie. Pro tip: if you’re coloring in the edges of a mirror, don’t bother cleaning the surface until after, because your grubby little fingers will be all over it.

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I was able to hang it up with no real issues after that. It’s been up for a day without falling, so I have high hopes. Also, I had to go over and clean all of the mirrors again after it was up. I was so nervous about breaking it again, or it falling that I think it took me like ten minutes.

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You can see the effect of coloring in the edges of the mirrors with a Sharpie more in this picture. It really was a stroke of genius on Matt’s part I begrudgingly admit. It makes the project look more polished and professional.

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The room is starting to develop a bit of a theme. I’m pretty happy as its just little things every once in a while that go into it. Well, our parents are visiting in just over a week, so I guess the real test will be whether or not it falls on their heads when they sleep in there! Here’s hoping it doesn’t!

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