Mirror Renovation: "Gates of Moria"




About: I'm co-owner and creator on www.mj2artesanos.es. Along with Miguel, my husband, I enjoy working on something I love in the company of our daughter.

This is a project that I did when I came to live in my current home.

The entrance mirror seemed a little boring, so I decided to turn it into something that surprised me when I got home.

It is about making a "false" acid etching. As it is acrylic varnish, it does not damage the mirror, so that you can remove it when you want, but it seems that it is actually engraved.

When I did it I used a vinyl cutter machine to make a mask, but the spirit of Instructables consists (in my understanding) of teaching people to do things with means available to all, so I've done the instructable in a way that you need as little as possible.

Please excuse the mistakes that I will make, English is not my first language.

Step 1: Step 1: Materials

Drawing of the Doors of Moria to the necessary size.




Indelible marker pen.


Matt, clear acrylic varnish. (For wood). The pic in this step, its just to give an example.

Step 2: Step 2: Drawing Preparation

The heaviest part of this work was to outline the drawing so that each line was delimited by a contour, and this part I give it to you.

Here you have an EPS file to download and adapt to the size you need with any program that supports vectors. In my case I used Corel.

Once you have it resized, you place on it as many A4 size boxes (or the size you want to print) as necessary, letting pieces overlap to make the assembly easier. In my case it was like this.

Step 3: Step 3: Printing and Outline

Print each A4 box.

Now you have two options:

1. Cut everything that is going to be filled with varnish. (I do not recommend it, because there will be lots of loose parts that will then be harder to put on.

2. Make small cuts on the lines that define the drawing, without making the continuous cut, so that we can open the cut a little with the blade and see through (later you will understand why).

Once the whole drawing is profiled, assemble all the papers, overlapping the pieces so that the drawing is practically continuous. (There will be some blank parts because the printers do not print the page completely, thanks to the area of lap that we have left we can cut these white parts, but it is not really necessary, it is obvious where the drawing follows).

Once the assembly is done, stick it on the mirror.

Step 4: Step 4: Transfer the Drawing to the Mirror

Thanks to the cuts that we did before in all the lines of the drawing, now we simply have to pass over the indelible marker and there will be marked lines in the mirror (after the varnish has dried you can erase the marks with alcohol).

It is difficult to photograph marks on a mirror (you can see double marks because the mark of the glass and its reflection), but I think with this example you will get an idea.

Step 5: Step 5: Painting

We already have the outline to follow the draw with the brush and wood varnish. (Do not take too much varnish at a time, so it will not drip).

At first it is transparent. Once dry it is translucent (whitish) and matte.

I recommend testing before putting the complete drawing to make sure the appearance when dry, and the amount you have to put.

Step 6: Step 6: Remove Marks

Let it dry for at least 48 hours (although it is dry to the touch before, it is better to leave it a little more to avoid erasing it with the alcohol).

With a piece of cloth and a little of alcohol (cleaning or even to heal wounds), remove the marker marks. They disappear easily, it is not necessary to rub with force, because if you do, you run the risk of erasing the drawing.

Step 7: Final Result

This is the final result, when opening the door and entering, the outside light highlights the lines drawn, making a surprising effect. (Sorry, it's difficult to photograph).

In addition, if the mirror is illuminated from the bottom, the reflection in the walls or ceiling is amazing.

I hope you liked it and of course encourage you to do it with this or other drawings.

If you like this instructable, please vote for it in "Before & After Contest" and "Home improvement contest"

Thank you!!!



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    6 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Love this project. I do lots of large banners and use a similar technique to create them. I create the pattern just like you do, but instead of paint, I attach the pattern to the fabric and use my sewing machine to "draw" the pattern onto the fabric with a contrasting thread. Then I use a second print out to cut the various colors of fabric needed and applique them to the background. The "drawn" lines show me where to place them. I have the perfect place to put a banner of Moria. PS, your English is excellent by the way.


    1 year ago

    AWESOME!! Very creative, and fun. You definitely have my votes! Thanks for providing the files, and by the way, your English is fine :-)


    1 year ago

    This is so perfect! I've been planning on decorating the front of my wall bed this way for when it's upright and hidden.

    Thank you so much for providing your .eps files so I can use it with my vinyl cutter. I'll send pictures once I've finished it :)

    1 reply

    1 year ago

    Oooh, that's really pretty! I've got a friend that re-reads the books every year and she would LOVE this :)

    1 reply