I got this old dresser mirror for free and had big ideas to turn it into a fun chalkboard for the kitchen. But once I had completed the frame, I knew it was the perfect piece to match the renovated dresser in our guest room and decided to leave it as a mirror instead.
The mirror was in decent shape when I picked it up. It had a few wood panels that had fallen off, but otherwise it was pretty good. The biggest obstacle in prepping the mirror for painting was the thick piece of wood at the bottom that was meant to connect the mirror to the dresser. Since I had no plans to connect the mirror to a dresser, I knew it had to come off. So, for the first time ever, I tackled the mirror with a saw and got rid of the piece. It made the mirror look much sleeker. I just picked up this cheap hand saw - which done the trick!
For the pieces of the frame that had fallen off, I used wood glue to reattach them to the main frame (ha ha). Although it probably wasn't actually necessary, I hammered some small nails in just to secure the pieces on properly. In order to prep the mirror for painting, I sanded it using my Hyper Tough Orbit Sander, which works great for all my needs. I finished off with a fine grit (120) sandpaper for an extra smooth finish. I have mentioned this in some of my previous up-cycle posts, but when using chalk paint you don't actually have to do sanding to prep the surface. I think that it really makes a big difference though to the way the paint attaches to the piece that you are painting, so I always do just enough to rough it up and get rid of any thick gunk on the surface. After giving the mirror a wipe down with a damp cloth, it was ready for paint.
I used Rustoleums Linen White Chalk Paint, on the entire frame, as well as on the brass little spindles at the top of the mirror. It took perfectly and after a second coat, the mirror frame had full coverage,
Next came the distressing. I have wanted to distress a piece for a long time, but every time I got started I began doubting myself and would paint over the parts that I had already distressed. This time I was determined to see it through to the end. There is something strangely therapeutic about destressing. I used a fine grit (120) sandpaper wrapped around a sanding block and went to town. There really is no wrong way to distress, but I tried to concentrate on corners and grooves and other areas that would normally get banged up and scratched over the course of time. Depending on the look you are going for, you could definitely do less distressing, but I really liked the character that it added to the mirror and I went all out.
I finished the mirror off with Rust-oleum's matte based polyurethane so that I could keep the chalky look of the paint, without a high glossy appearance. I only used one coat of the polyurethane, but if you are doing a piece that will get a lot of traffic, I recommend doing at least two coats.
I am absolutely in love with the way this mirror turned out. It really matches the farmhouse soft feel that I am hoping to decorate our whole home with. I may soon be trying to convince hubby to redecorate our own bedroom so that I can move the mirror into our room instead.
I love a great little DIY project. There is nothing better than putting your personal touch on the décor around your home, making it a unique and true reflection of what you want.
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