Introduction: Make a Decorative Framed Mirror

About: Easy and affordable DIY projects and ideas.

I finally got round to making up the large framed mirror for the wall above the vanity basins. The new vanity replaces a pedestal sink with a dinky bathroom cabinet above. There is now plenty of space in the vanity for all our bathroom essentials and I can now replace the cabinet with a large, framed mirror.

The mirror was sprayed with Rust-Oleum Universal - titanium silver - which ties in beautifully with the new whisper grey walls. The new colour makes the bathroom look so much brighter, and using matt paint disguises the horrible plaster finish on the walls.

The metallic silver mirror also has a small shelf at the bottom that will come in handy for everyday items. The frame and shelf were made separately and then the shelf screwed to the base of the frame.


20 x 94mm wide PAR pine cut to length

20 x 67mm wide PAR pine for French cleat and 30mm screws

Mirror, cut to size at your local hardware depot

4 of mirror brackets and 16mm screws

Biscuits, #20

Ponal wood glue

Wood filler

Rust-Oleum Universal spray paint in your choice of finish

Fischer wall plugs and suitable masonry bit


Drill / Driver plus assorted bits

Mitre saw, jigsaw or table saw

Biscuit joiner

Orbital sander plus 120- and 240-grit sanding pads

Electronic detector

Step 1: Make the Frame

1. Measure up the area in order to cut the required lengths for the top, bottom, sides and shelf for your picture frame. Cut the frame pieces with a 45-degree angle at the ends. Find tips here for cutting angled ends.

2. Using a biscuit joiner is the easiest and fastest way to make picture frames, but you could simply join the sections at the back using steel angle braces and screws.

GOOD TO KNOW: Set the cutting depth for #20 biscuits and dry fit the biscuits to make sure they fit half way into the cut slot.

3. Apply Ponal wood glue into the slots and along the edges and join the sections together to create the frame. Work on a flat, level surface so as not to disturb the frame once is has been glued together. Leave undisturbed overnight.

4. Should there be any gaps at the corners, use wood filler to cover up. Let this dry before sanding.

GOOD TO KNOW: If there are any defects in the pine board, fill these with wood filler and leave to dry.

5. Start off sanding with 120-grit sanding pads to remove the roughness left by the cutting blade and then sand again with 240-grit for a smooth finish.

6. Wipe clean to remove any dust before spraying the entire frame with Rust-Oleum Universal spray paint. Allow each coat to dry thoroughly before applying a further coat. A little trick I have is to spray one side, let it dry and then wipe down with Mr Min furniture polish. This prevents any tackiness when I turn the project over to spray the other side.

GOOD TO KNOW: The frame was placed on small pieces of foam around the edges to make it easier to turn over without damaging the finish.

Step 2: Mount the Frame

7. To mount the heavy frame onto the wall I am using the French cleat system. This involves two block of wood on either side, each block cut in half with a 45-degree angle. For this you will need a compound mitre saw or jigsaw with adjustable plate. Make the angled cuts first and then cut the blocks to size. In this way you don't have to worry about having your hands too close to the blade when making the angled cuts.

8. One part of the French cleat is mounted to the back of the frame using wood glue and screws. Note the angle of this section and how it will slot in the lower section once mounted.

GOOD TO KNOW: Before drilling into walls - any walls - use an electronic detector to check that it will be safe. Green and you are good to go!

9. When using Fischer wall plugs they tell you what drill bit and diameter screws to use, but also make sure that the screws are 5mm longer than the plug, plus the material you are mounting onto the wall.

10. Once you know it is safe to do so, drill holes in the wall for mounting the French cleats.

Now all that you need to do is lift up the mirror and slot the two French cleat brackets together to securely hold the frame in place.

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