I recently posted a little IG story of how I made this wood that I used on my standing wall mirror look like barn wood. I love the look of old chippy barn wood but finding the real deal for under a million dollars here in Tucson is next to impossible. I’m kind of kidding but not really, barn wood is pricey! I have made several of these large standing mirrors and have had many requests for a tutorial, so here goes.
I started out with 2×10″ boards cut to the size I needed for my mirror frame. When cutting the boards, I knew I needed extra space on each side as well as the top and bottom. I left approximately 5″ of overhang on each side as well as the top and bottom. You will see later on when we are connecting the mirror to the frame why the extra space is needed. I also ordered dry lumber to decrease the amount of warping. The lumber we usually get from our local home improvement store comes damp. Damp lumber warps over time during the drying process and can make the boards “curl”/warp at the edges of the mirror.
After I sanded my 2×10 pine boards down with my hand sander and 100 grit sand paper, I wiped my board off and painted the entire part of the board that would be showing white as my first step. I didn’t need to paint the back side. For one, it is not going to show and for two, it helps the liquid adhesive to stick better when the back side of the board is not painted. I did paint all of the sides and just under the lip of the sides that would be touching the mirror just in case the mirror reflected the finish from underneath at all.
I then sanded for distressing with my hand sander with 100 grit sand paper. After my boards were distressed the way that I wanted them to be, I added special walnut stain with a rag, making sure that I got the parts of the boards that were showing from the distressing covered with stain. I then wiped the stain lightly over the entire board. I sometimes sand again, making the white show through more and then stop at this step, but this time I went a step further. I painted the entire board again with white chalk paint and then distressed it again after it was dry with my hand sander and 100 grit sand paper. I completed these extra steps this time to try to make a layered paint so that when I sanded it, it would chip off and give more of a “chippy look” rather than a “distressed only look”. There were some places that chipped and some that looked distressed. I used the sander in the places that I wanted to be distressed and chippy. This last step is kind of a preference of how I wanted my boards to look.
Now comes the fun part! I find these large mirrors at various places like yard sale sites and Craigslist. When people do renovations in a home, sometimes they take these mirrors out of the bathrooms. They are just the standard builder grade mirrors that builders put in the homes for a new build. Sometimes they will have glue remaining on the back side because of how they are attached to the wall but that doesn’t matter because the glue will never show anyways since it will be propped against the wall.
My sweet husband did this part for me. I laid down a blanket to keep the boards from being scratched on the floor while he was assembling it. He then used 1-1/4″ trim head screws for our project (since our boards were 2″ thick boards) at an angle to connect the side boards to the base and top boards.
“Liquid nails” was used as an adhesive to seal the mirror to the wood. The liquid nails will not hold the mirror to the wood completely on its own but it acts as an “extra” to hold the mirror tighter to the frame. He then drilled a 1×4″ board to each end of the mirror as well as a thin piece of wood over each end of the mirror.
You can see the little square pieces of wood that he used on each side of the mirror to keep the piece of wood that goes over the back side of the mirror from being too tight and cracking the mirror.
With all of the reinforcements, we were able to stand the mirror up right after we had it put together. Keep in mind that these types of mirrors cannot be hung due their weight and the way that the mirror is stabilized and assembled. These mirrors are super heavy and work wonderful as standing mirrors that lean against the wall. I’m guessing that they weigh well over 100 pounds. I just love these mirrors and if you make them yourself, they can be so budget friendly. It’s a time consuming project if you are completing the wood technique but well worth it in the end.
I also have a more distressed version of one of these large mirrors in my bedroom.
And this mirror in my hallway (if you can see it) was the last mirror that I had completed with more of a distressed finish as well. I just distressed it more during the distressing process and did not complete the last step of painting over it again.
I hope this little tutorial helps you with your next mirror project. I love how mirrors make a room look so much larger.
Living Room Source: at the end of post here
Bedroom Room Source: here
*As always, affiliate links have been added to this post to assist you in finding supplies and decor.