Tuesday, September 14, 2010

No-brainer mirror-accented frames.

You guys, this idea is so simple, I hesitate to post...I'm sure I'm not the only one to think of it.  But I did come to it independently, and liked it.  I figure I'll put it up for that percentage of y'all who might not have happened upon it yet.

The look: framed art, accented with a mirrored mat.

The big idea: just stick some art to a mirror.

Wow.  That's a short tutorial.  Let's see if I can fancy it up a little.  You might try a couple of different methods:

I used double-stick tape, but you could also use earthquake wax (at least, that's what we call it around here).  It's that sticky stuff you use to secure your fragile, tippy Ming vases and Faberge eggs.

I recently received the gift of a print by Seattle artist Susanne Kelly; it's from a painting of hers that I have loved (and coveted) for many years.  Didn't have a frame for it.  What to do?

I took this basic mirror, which was under my bed communing with the dust bunnies:

I double-stick-taped Susanne's print to the mirror...

Voi!  La!

There's just something about that tiny reflective rim around the painting that sparks up the simple frame.  It's subtle, doesn't take any focus away from the painting - but when you walk past, there's a teeny *bling* of moving glitter that I heart!

I love my print, dearest Susanne, thank you so much.

Here's the same idea with a thrift store mirror and a poster from the annual horse fair in Carmona, Spain:

I also tried one with a black-and-white photo.  This one has a much wider mirrored rim, and I like that effect, too.

Notes: The wax would work great to hold something heavier or three dimensional.  It might leave a little stain, so avoid using it on thin paper.  And yes, the tape and wax are semi-permanent.  A good thing, in case I need one of those mirrors again someday.  But if you're thinking they won't hold very long, think again.  That tape holds forEVAH.  And nearly everything in my house has been earthquake-waxed tight since 1994.  I lived a mile from the epicenter of the Northridge quake, and learned my lesson the hard way.

Thanks for being patient with my little no-brainer project.  I promise the next tutorial will be grievously difficult, with a dozen steps, advanced math, and some hellish diagrams.

Or not.  Hee.

BTW, Ms. Kelly has a beautiful website whereon you can see her paintings and woodcuts.  Don't miss the happiness of checking her out!  (The woodcuts are particularly wowser.)


  1. Well I must have been absent the day they taught this in blogland because I haven't seen it before :) Simple, fast, cheap,changeable? What more could you want?

  2. I haven't seen it before either!

    Nice idea..

  3. that's 3 for 3! you are just educatin' the world today on Mich L in LA. very cool and bling-y!

  4. oooh, you've changed your picture? Sweet!
    I have never seen mirror cum picture before, and I like it. A lot.

  5. Nope, never seen it. Nuh uh. And yeah, it's a cool idea!

  6. Oh but it is such a wonderful idea. I particularly like it with the black and white photo (can't imagine why).

  7. I've never actually done that before. Great idea! It's amazing how simple projects can turn out so cute.

  8. Me neither --never seen it before. I bet we will see it pop up somewhere on HGTV any day now....this is such a great idea! I really love it too --I think a touch of mirror lends such a special sparkle touch to a room, but I dont nessisarily want a mirror in every room...now I get the best of both worlds. Genius!

    PS: I am so intrigued by the concept of earthquake wax...off to google!

  9. Pop over to Rehab when you get a chance; I just gave you an award!

  10. I love this idea. My favorite is the blk & white photo on the mirror. I can picture a mantel covered in these.

  11. what a fun change from the normal mats Thanks for linking up to Topsy Turvy Tuesday's!