Sunday, April 3, 2011

Knocked-off Pottery Barn Eagan Mirror

There's a blog that I love checking on about once a week, just to see what she's up to and get some inspiration from (which usually just involves me thinking about it, because her style is SO not something the Husbeast could live with, but which I like).  Recently she had this post and I said 'oooh, we could both agree on that!'.  My in-laws were in town, they had taken Little Boy off to St Louis for a couple days, so I figured I could knock it out while they were gone. 

Off to Orange I went!  I bought 2 2x4' sheets of particle board, some 'screen door' trim and some lattice trim.  The lattice trim is because I decided to do the trim around the outside to hide the gap between the mirror and wall that the hanger creates (which was a huge peeve of mine about our current mirror).(this is referenced in The Lettered Cottage's tut for this mirror).  Also bought liquid nails, mirror mastic, a bracket to hook the two pieces of particle board together, a french cleat rated for 100 pounds, and a can of Rustoleum's Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint. I couldn't find the mirror flowers there, so I picked those up at Blue.  I didn't find white ones like Layla shows, so I bought 2 4-packs of the clear plastic kind.  Tried Walmart first for the mirror tiles, and sure enough they had them at 3$ each. 

At home I laid out the screen door trim (which I had cut to the width of the mirror tiles) and the mirrors and measured how large I needed the particle board to be.  Basically, I followed Layla's tutorial pretty much exactly, but I didn't spray paint until the end (before attaching the mirrors).  My big issue with all 3 of the tuts I read was that nobody had specified how thick their particle board was!  The only kind I could get here was about 1/8th inch thick, and turned out to be a poor choice.  So, I took apart all of my work (I hadn't gotten TOO far, thankfully) and went back to Blue to see what they had.  I ended up finding a nice piece of 1/4" plywood, in a 4x4 sheet.  So, no need to use the bracket or hook together two pieces.  I just cut it down to size and moved on.  I used a scrap 1x3 for the back support for the french cleat.  Most of the mirror is just held together with Liquid Nails.  I did put a couple nails in to the back trim.
The plywood base with the back trim glued & nailed on.  Corners are mitered.

The back of the base, showing the 'lip' that will hide the gap between the mirror and the wall.  Also, the 1x3 glued & screwed from the front, for the french cleat.

This was the process for attaching the small trim pieces between each mirror.  I laid out a row of tiles & horizontal trim (with a long vertical trim spacer), then used Liquid Nails and clamps and hand weights to glue down the small trim pieces.  After 30-60 minutes, really whenever I'd remember, I'd go back and do the next row.  Once all the short horizontal trim was done, I did the long vertical pieces, the same way.

Liquid Nails again to hold down the little star flower doohickeys.  I had bought the cut tacks recommended by The Lettered Cottage tut, but they were too small for the opening.  I decided to just use caulk to smooth out the hole.

It's 'done'.  Everything is dry, the flowers are caulked, the baby monitor is on :)  I'm not IN LOVE with it though.  I figure paint will help!

This is a caulked flower.  After looking at different things we have lying around the house, and talking to the Husbeast about it, I decided to go with plain old metal thumb tacks from a 'variety of fasteners' box we bought quite a few years ago.
Thumbtacks!  Added after I primed the flowers!  I decided to prime the flowers because they were clear plastic and I had never painted clear plastic before.

4 coats of spray paint.  Nobody had mentioned priming before the paint, so I didn't either.  I wish I had since I think it wouldn't have needed as many coats.  I ended up using the entire can.
The part I had been dreading - removal of the stickers from the mirrors.  They also had 4 rubber pads on the bottom of each, but those came off really easily.  I tried to soak them off in an assembly line of wet paper towels, but that was too much like hard work.  Finally remembered we had some Goo Gone and just dabbed a bit onto each label, waited 10 minutes and then they peeled right off.  Washed the fronts with dish soap and warm water and they were perfect.

I attached the french cleat to the 1x3 at this point.  In each square I did 2 lines of mirror mastic, with a dot in the middle.  Pressed each tile down and then let it cure for 24 hours.

Our old too-small mirror that I've had for donkey's years.

Beautiful lovely new mirror!  Would have been 250$ plus shipping, but I made it for around 80$.  I have enough leftovers that I am thinking of making a 2x5 version for our bedroom or bathroom.  All I would need is the tiles, flowers, and a small amount of trim


  1. Beautiful! Awesome job, I love that!

  2. Hi Leah,

    I couldn’t find contact information on your blog. What is the best way to reach you? I’d like to email you about a program sponsored by GOO GONE, one of my clients.

    Mary Jo