Tag Archives: bathroom remodels

Thrift store mirror make-over


I picked up these mirrors at a thrift store for five dollars each.



They were heavy and the frames appeared solid and in great shape.  For ten dollars , I was ready to risk refinishing them.  I thought they would be beautiful above my double vanity in my master bath.  Diamonds in the ruff.


The mirror frames had ornate carvings that I thought were plastered.  Much to my surprise, they were solid wood.  I had to get through a layer of cream, gold and burnt orange paint to find the wood.

1. My first mistake was not covering the mirror glass.

2. My second mistake was not covering my face with a mask.  (Old paint can contain lead paint)

After sanding a bit, and I thought that I was being very careful not to touch the glass, I saw that I was bumping the glass mirror.  This caused scratches in the mirror!!  So, I taped around the edges with some painter’s tape.

3. My third mistake was not covering the WHOLE mirror.


I was planning on painting these frames but I loved the distressed look that was slowly being revealed.  I sprayed on cleaner and went to work with a toothbrush to thoroughly clean all the crevices and remove the loose paint particles.


I was happy with the looks of the mirror.  I sanded some areas down to expose the wood while leaving other areas with various colors still showing.  To seal the frames I put on two coats of clear finish coat.


verb (used without object) to speak or declaim extravagantly or violently; talk in a wild or vehement way; rave:

See all my scratches around the edges of the mirror? Ugghh, I felt so stupid and angry at myself.  I knew this mirror would have to go to Over The Mountain Glass to be repaired because those bitty scratches would drive me crazy.  This bargain of mine was going to cost me after all, and all because of my lack of foresight. Oh, I thought I was safe by covering my other mirror with tape.  Remember mistake number 3?  When I was sanding with the rotary sander I actually bumped the mirror BEYOND the tape.  Both mirrors had to be replaced.  This was a $130.oo mistake.  By the way, the original mirrors were in almost perfect condition when I got them. JEEEZZE-O-Man was I sick!

I had the mirrors replaced in the frames that I refinished because those small scratches would drive me CRAZY. (my husband was real happy about that)   I was certain that they would look beautiful above my cabinets that I had just refinished. (see my tutorial on how I refinished ALL of my Thermafoil /vinyl cabinets both in the kitchen and my bathrooms) This project was not without it’s disappointments’ however,  I love this shabby chic look!









Removing a glued wall mirror

I was bored with my “contractor grade” mirror above the double vanity in my master bathroom.  I found two mirrors at the thrift store (five dollars each..yoohoo!) that I wanted to switch for the one larger mirror.  This tutorial will show you step by step what I did to remove the mirror and repair the wall.


I bought a large roll of duck tape and started taping.  I also covered my vanity with a drop cloth to protect it throughout the project.



This was probably overkill on the Duck tape but I’m overly cautious.  I was so afraid of breaking the mirror. I can’t afford  seven years of bad luck.
I would recommend using goggles and gloves.  I used Mr. Mechanic’s help for this part of the project. The mirror was too heavy to handle alone.   We started pushing in  wood shims to help “pry” the mirror while gently pulling the mirror from the wall. You could hear it tearing loose from the paper on the drywall.  This process took about a minute and there was no breakage or chipping of the mirror. (I’m going to sale the old mirror on Craigslist to recoup some of my project money)


SPECIAL NOTE: My sister just called me on the phone to ask me what a shim was. She edits my blog and gives me feedback to insure that I keep everything easy to understand. Shims are thin strips or wedges of wood, metal or plastic. They are used for driving into crevices or to help with leveling something.  As you gently lift the mirror from the wall, push these shims behind it. Ultimately. I was trying to create a gap between the mirror and the wall to help me pry the mirror off the wall. The shims help to keep that gap until the whole mirror is loose.



We were able to gently scrape some of the old adhesive patches off with a putty knife.

With some of the more thinner patches  we cut through the 1st layer of the drywall, using a small blade to outline the old adhesive.  It made it easier to remove the old adhesive that was permanently attached to the first layer of the drywall. It also helped minimalize damage to the drywall. Any damages have to be repaired if they aren’t going to be covered by a mirror.
Now I filled all the holes and thinner patches with joint compound that I purchased at Lowes. Wait for it to dry thoroughly.
Once dried, lightly sand all the patches with 150 grit sandpaper until the patches feel (rub over them with your hands) like they blend with the wall. Now primer paint all your patches.  I use KILZ brand primer for all my priming needs.

Note: Once I primed my patches, I noticed a couple of them that I needed to patch again.  Sometimes you won’t notice some of the divots until they have a coat of primer on them.  You just have to patch them again.  ARRGH! !





My wall had an orange peel texture.  The patches are smooth and they will be noticeable once I put my paint on. I purchased some spray wall texture from Lowe’s. This is the brand that I love.  It’s not cheap but worth the money spent to help blend in those smooth patches.  This wall texture has three different settings on the can so you can choose how large you want your texture to be.  Just try and match what is already on the wall.  It is a bit messy.  So cover your surfaces and clean up overspray quickly.  Before I started spraying the texture on the wall, I practiced spraying on piece of cardboard.




Once my texture was dry (about 30 minutes) I lightly sanded the whole surface.  Next, I primed the texture spray.  These textured spots can appear duller in sheen if you skip this step.  You might end up having to put on more coats of finish paint to achieve a good, overall sheen on your finished paint job.  Primer is cheaper than paint so I didn’t skip this step.  Finally, I rolled on a couple of finish coats of paint.


My wall turned out beautiful and I hung up my two mirrors.  These mirrors are hanging by wires attached to the frames.  They cover more wall than I expected but I KNOW the walls still look perfect behind them. Heh, heh.  I love this new look too.