Saturday, May 8, 2010

Antiquing a Mirror {all by yourself!}

Pin It

I love stuff that is worn and weathered. I think antique mirrors are so fun. They can be hard to find, and pricey.  I loooove these from Anthropologie:

So neat, right?  They are only $695.00.  Yes, you read that right!

I was inspired by these in Ballard Designs:
I love the jute around the edges, and the leather strap.  Would look great in my house.

Well, today I would loooove to show you how to make the Ballard Designs mirrors, with an antique twist. 

Supplies Needed:
Mirror{s} (my mirrors are 18")
Jute or Twine
Paint Stripper
Muriatic Acid
Vinyl tubing
Gorrilla Tape (or duck tape)
Black Paint (brush on or spray paint)
Neoprene Gloves
Face Mask
Glue Gun
Disc Hangers

WHERE to find your supplies:
  • Mirror{S}-most craft stores only sell mirrors up to 10".  I ordered mine online, and found a large selection for a low price.  (18" for $6.99 each)
  • Jute or Twine-can be found at any craft store
  • Paint Stripper-head to your local home improvement store
  • Muriatic Acid-this is actually a pool cleaning chemical, and can be found at any home improvement store in the pool section ($6 for a gallon).  Or if you know anyone with a pool or access to a high school chem lab, it could be free!
  • Vinyl Tubing-can be bought by the foot at your home improvement store.  It is in the plumbing section ($1.20 per foot)
  • Gloves/Face Mask-you WILL need these! ($4 for both @ Lowe's)
  • Glue Gun-you should already have one of these :)

 A precaution: Muriatic Acid is the same thing as hydrochloric acid.  It is perfectly safe to use if YOU are careful.  Never ever use this around children or pets.  Wear gloves, a mask, goggles, and shoes!  This stuff can dissolve rocks.  It is dangerous if not used properly!  BE CAUTIOUS!

FYI: A little about the anatomoy of a mirror.  It is glass (or plastic) with a reflective film, and then paint on top of that film to protect it from scratching.

Steps to an AWESOME antiqued mirror


    1.  Liberally apply paint stripper to the back of the mirror, and let it sit for 
         10 mins.  
    2.  Wipe off the paint stripper, and most of the paint should come off; rub
         or scrape hard if needed!

   3.  Wipe off mirror with a dry towel.
   4.  Fill a spray bottle with Muriatic acid, and lightly spray where you want the
        acid to EAT THROUGH the reflective coating.

    5.  Watch your mirror; the acid works fast.  Wipe off any excess acid as 
        soon as you get the results you want. (the blue arrows show the dark 
        spots where the acid ate through the reflective coating)

    6.  Scratch up your mirror some with something sharp.  I found that scratch 
         marks added a nice touch to the "acid burns"

    7.  Wipe the mirror down thoroughly with a wet towel.  This will prevent the
         acid from continuing to eat the reflective coating.

    8.  Allow the mirror to air dry for 10 mins or so. 

    9.  Spray paint or brush paint the back of your mirror black.

  10.  After the paint dries, enjoy your Antiqued Mirror!

Steps to a Ballard Designs {knock off} Frame!
    Measure vinyl tubing to fit around mirror (this will be your "frame")

    Tape ends together securely using Gorilla Tape


    Watch your munchkin run away with your project........

    Being wrapping "frame" with jute or twine.

    Hot glue jute/twine every so often for stability.

    Glue your "frame" on top of your antiqued mirror (I used Gorilla Glue)

    I cut up one of my husband's old belts to use for the strap (looooovin the look of this leather!)

    Add a leather strap to hang (to really "knock off" BD!)

    I found that the leather strap didn't quite hold the weight.

    That's where Disc Hangers come in!

    I peeled off the paper backing and put the adhesive side on my mirror.

    I used the disc hanger to actually hang the mirror.  The leather strap is more for looks than function.  Call me crazy :D

    Hang up and ENJOY!

    Ballard Designs Mirror: $139.00
    Anthropologie Antiqued Mirrors: $695.00
    My {antiqued & awesome} Mirror: $15.50


    1. Thanks for a great how to do it. I think I am going to try this and perhaps glue some antique pictures to the back of the mirror. Can't wait to get started.

    2. Wow.. this post is LOADED with a ton of useful and cool tips. And I'm loving how you wrapped the tube. That is clever! A really fun and whimsical outcome!

      Thanks for linking this up to SNS!
      FJ Donna

    3. Aa-mazing!! Thanks for the how to. This is one for the design file. I love it, this is doable ... ( is that a word? It's a word in my head.)

    4. you make it look and sound sooo easy! thanks for sharing the tips, -s

    5. you make it look and sound sooo easy! thanks for sharing the tips, -s

    6. i nominated you for a sunshine award! here is my post!

    7. SO very clever! I love it!
      I just was looking at Ballard's version of this last night in the catalog I got.
      SO, now I can make one myself!!
      Your munchkin looked quite pleased with himself that he was making a getaway with your tubing! Too cute!
      Blessings to you as you make your home today!
      (I found your link at TYHT)

    8. Now this is an awesome project to add to my list of "getting around to projects". I've got mirrors looking to be ReVamped into something and this is the best idea so far. I may end up doing this soon since our weather is permitting for a few months.

    9. I love your blog! This is so cool. I'll be back when I have more time to read. :) In the mean time, I'm going to put your button on one of my Points Of Interest posts.

    10. Hi Sarah. I'm Jan. I saw your project on the DIY Club link and really loved it. It's a great looking project and thank you so much for the tutorial. I'm marking this one for my files. I really like your blog and am going to follow you. I would love to invite you to do the same! Good luck in the contest. You've got a GREAT project!

    11. FYI, I am featuring your easy decor balls at again!

    12. LOVE LOVE LOVE this! I would never have thought in a million years to use vinyl tubing for the mirror frame. You are the crafting guru! I'm adding you to my blogroll so keep the great ideas coming! :)

    13. Sara, What a creative and gorgeous project! The materials you used are so clever!! Thanks so much for joining The DIY Club this month! We greatly appreciate it! ~ Stephanie Lynn

    14. Hi Sarah - Your project is one of the top ten finalists for The DIY CLUB. Be sure to check out the voting post on any of the four DIY CLUB blogs. Congratulations and thanks again for joining this month!

    15. I LOVE how creative you are. I might have to use your handy dandy tutorial and create myself one of those.

    16. Found you via 504 Main DIY, I'm a new follower. Please stop by to see me sometime and join in. bty Fabulous Mirror!

    17. THANK YOU!!! I plan on using your advice to make a whole wall of antique mirrors for a century old wedding event venue that was recently restored. This has saved us a fortune!

    18. Hi! I came across your great tutorial here and want to say thanks. Very clearly written! I'm an artist and I'll be using your technique, then collaging and painting on the reverse side of the mirrors.

      Would you be able to tell me where you found your 18" mirrors online? I've had no luck finding that size.

      Many thanks for your time!
      Jen Munch

    19. Thinking to set up your walls with wall mirrors… no way to be upset. We are here to help you. The TexasCustomMirrors.COM is the most prominent shop in this time. We sell every type of wall mirrors, especially for bathrooms, bedrooms and also in common rooms. If you want to contact with us visit our website where you will find all types information on the other hand, we have the supporting team for helping you in this purpose. We also sell excellent framed mirrors as your dream. No way to be confused our process is not very stiff.

    20. Vaastushastra tells us about problems in human life, such as physical problems, mental suffering, business problems and other routine problems due to nature and the environment
      get vastu consultant in pune,

    21. AE clicks is mobile app development company in Dubai that provides various technology related services including mobile app development.We are committed to providing the most qualified skill set to meet the growing demands of businesses and individuals alike.


    I truly enjoy and appreciate EVERY comment! Thank you for taking the time to comment, and stop by my blog!