DIY Rustic Mirror (and a half bath update)

DIY Rustic Mirror (and a half bath update)

If you’re new to my blog there are two things you should know about me.

1) I love and I mean love the look of natural wood grain. So I do a lot of crafts with wood. Because of this I have a very hard time painting over wood. Including the everyday boring Pine wood whose wood grain is taken for granted.

2) I also love the look of old wood, salvaged and upcycled wood. Old furniture made with this, bring it on.

What I don’t like about the salvaged wood decor is the price tag that often comes with it. If I could afford it you’d better believe I’d buy it. Some of my favourites are from Restoration Hardware and Hudson Goods. But with prices reaching $895, it’s like do I buy groceries for a month or get a mirror. Maybe one day when Lotto Max calls it’ll be a different story.

So what do you do until that day? You make one.

We started “renovating” our half bathroom on the main floor this past year after doing absolutely nothing with it for 2 years. By renovating I mean we had a really, REALLY tight budget and that meant re-using things and splurging only on a new faucet.

It looked like this during the process. I’d like to tell you it was somehow different before, but honestly if you take away the ladder, it was pretty much the same room.

Actually the nail  holes in the walls were now covered so this was an improvement.

half bath update begins

half bath update begins (2)

First thing we did is paint it – by we I mean my husband – Twilight Grey by BEHR.

Then we took out this old faucet. Again by we, I mean my husband.

old faucet

And thanks to a great sale at Lowe’s, picked up the Jaida faucet by Pfister.

We love this one so much I am trying to find a comparable kitchen version.

Jaida Faucet Pfister

Oh wait, what’s that nice warm brown thing above the faucet?

That’s the idea I got into my head and said “Hey James want to make me a mirror frame?”

This bathroom is an extremely tall, narrow bathroom with 11 foot ceilings. It needed something to draw the attention away from the wasted space overhead. A good mirror could do that.

So after my husband finally got himself a nice Father’s Day treat at Lowe’s – aka the DEWALT 12″ Double Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw (they also had a seriously good sale on this one that weekend and this was something that we really needed for the basement renovation) –  it was time to build the frame for it.

DeWalt Mitre saw

We started with this, our sexy old bathroom mirror.

Yes this was on our wall. Don’t be jealous.

building a rustic mirror (2)

I had this vision of a rustic, farmhouse style mirror that looked like it had come off of a steamship because you know, boats and farms are the same thing. I had fallen in love with the nautical porthole mirror look. Except I needed it in a rectangular shape.

In which case we picked up some cedar wood and carriage bolts to add to that look.

building a rustic mirror (3)

Started with a simple frame with straight cuts and tried to use LePage premium construction glue to glue the two boards together.

building a rustic mirror (4)

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Let’s file that under it seemed like a great idea at the time.

Normally LePage works really well and we’ve used it countless times before, but for whatever reason (most likely the slight wavy shape of the wood mixed in with the humidity going on outside) it would just not glue together, even after we sat our kettle bells on the wood to weigh it down.

building a rustic mirror (5)

So we went back to securing it together the old school way on the backside of the frame with screws.

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Then it was flipped over to the front side and a smaller piece of wood was glued to the center. That held no problem.

building a rustic mirror (7)

Notched out some holes for the carriage bolts and put the pieces of wood together.

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building a rustic mirror (11)

building a wood mirror frame

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We went back and forth on whether or not to whitewash the wood frame or do a dark aged look.

It’s one of those things that when you’re standing in the bathroom and looking at the paint colour, you realize that it needed a warm piece of wood. Had the frame been done in white within that room, it would have looked all kinds of wrong. And felt very cold.

So we used Minwax Dark Walnut to stain it.

This was 10 mins left on and then wiped off.

Minwax Walnut (2)

Minwax Walnut (3)

Minwax  Dark Walnut

Then we used a coat of Minwax Polyurethane to seal and protect it.

It took almost 3 days to dry in our basement.

minwax dark walnut

For hanging a mirror/frame that now weighed a lot, we used the Hangman 200lb French Cleat picture hanger and then basic mirror hooks to attach the mirror to the frame.

hanging a mirror (3)

hanging a mirror (2)

And welcomed it to its new home…

DIY Rustic Mirror

DIY rustic mirror (2)

DIY Farmhouse Mirror

Next up in the bathroom reno, filling this empty wall space with some decor and storage.


And oh yeah. This light needs a hell of a makeover. I’m thinking cages…

bar light that needs to go