Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

A Reflection of You

One of my favourite décor elements is the mirror. I just did a quick count of mirrors in my own home and came up with twenty two. Large, small, round, square, leaning, hanging, we have them all. Some are small and grouped together, a few are really big, some are coloured and fun, and each one is a reflection of our home’s personality. Most were chosen and placed more for visual effect than for usefulness because I know that mirrors reflect more than just what you see in them.

Let’s look at some of the multiple benefits of mirrors:

  • Expand space as it seems like you can enter into the reflected image.
  • Maximize light and views by sharing them with the opposite side of the room.
  • Add interest and depth to an ordinary wall through both the reflection of the opposite wall and the texture and style of the mirror itself.
  • Seeing ourselves reflected in the room gives us the subliminal message that we belong, great for everyday self-esteem and an excellent home staging strategy to help potential home buyers feel at home.
  • Mirrors add value and function to items like medicine cabinets and coat hooks.
  • Numerous practical uses, such as seeing what the kids are doing behind you, checking yourself before opening the door to guests, and helping you shave or put on make-up.

Of the twenty two mirrors in my home, there are only 5 or 6 which are placed primarily for practical purposes.

The number one criteria I tell my clients when it comes to mirrors is that a mirror is only as good as what it reflects. If your design goal is to add interest, make sure a mirror will reflect something interesting and, if it won’t, it may be better to hang art instead.

Another important consideration is whether a mirror will be a good choice for the height placement your space dictates. It is important to weigh in the positioning of the mirror in relation to objects around it, and not just on eye level viewing. Don’t be afraid to go high or low, long or tall. It may not be a good idea to hang a mirror low if people will be checking themselves in it because a reflection of half a head is never ideal. A larger mirror or a grouping of multiple mirrors may be needed to satisfy both ideal reflection and décor appeal for the space.

Think outside the box…

  • Use mirrors in the garden to fill out the flowering perennials or redirect sunlight to a darker corner.
  • Use a combination of smaller mirrors together to form an interesting, texture-rich accent wall.
  • Place an oversized leaning mirror in a living room, dining room, bedroom or entry as a statement piece.
  • Replace glass panels in doors with mirrors for added privacy and reflection.
  • If you are choosing a mirror for a practical purpose, take it a step further, see the mirror as a chance to add style and interest, and get creative with the shape and frame.

Mirrors come in a wide assortment of affordable shapes, colours, and styles, so the only difficulty you should have in finding the perfect addition to your home is deciding which one.

A DIY Mirror Project

Creating something new from broken mirrors can be a worthwhile project. First, carefully smooth the edges of the glass pieces with strong sandpaper wearing protective gloves. Once those sharp edges are even, get creative. Use a glue gun to affix the pieces to a vase, table, or tray, or onto a canvas or garden stone to create art.

There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.”

~ Edith Wharton ~


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