Thursday, September 6, 2012

Shattered Mirror Art

If you are the superstitious type, you might want to click away now and come back tomorrow. Seriously. Look away! For the rest of you, I have a fun project to share!

I saw this over at Potholes and Pantyhose a couple of years ago and with the large open wall space above the couch that needed decorating I finally had an excuse to try it out! 

Liquid Nails
Caulking Gun
Thick Paper Bag

Start by painting a large piece of plywood in your color of choice. I used a thin 2' x 4' sheet that we picked up for under $5 and painted it Ultra Pure White in Satin to match the wainscoting.

Find an old or broken mirror. My Dad saved this one during a bathroom remodel that he did and brought it to our yard sale. He was so careful not to break it when he was taking it down and then I snagged it so I could bash it into little pieces.  Sorry Dad!

Before you get started, make sure to put on some work gloves so keep yourself from getting cut. Those little pieces get pretty sharp.

Place the mirror into a heavy paper bag or butcher paper. I used the big lawn clipping bags.  Close the bag and gently start tapping it with a hammer. Mirrors of different weights may require more force. Gradually start hitting it harder until you hear it crack.

It's probably a good idea to do this outside. It was really hot and humid the day I was working on it though so I worked on the kitchen floor and then vacuumed really well when I was done to make sure that I got any slivers that jumped out of the bag.

Open up the bag and check out the pretty little mirror pieces. If they are still too big, just close it up and start hitting it again.

Arrange the mirror pieces however you think looks best. I recommend starting with the bigger pieces and then working your way down to the small ones. This way you get a more even distribution of sizes rather than a bunch of the same size grouped together.

Use your caulk gun to apply the liquid nails glue onto the backs of each mirror piece. Make sure you don't use too much because it will squirt out the sides when you press the mirror down.

Let the glue dry for 24 hours and admire the fun light that it casts onto the wall. :)  It is easy to miss some pieces or use too little glue so after the dry time is over, tilt the board forward to see if any of the pieces fall off. If they do, just glue them back in place and let it dry some more.

Hang your artwork on the wall, stand back, and admire your handiwork. It gets pretty heavy so you will definitely want someone around to help you with this part. Remember to wear gloves too. I got a small cut on my hand because I forgot about that.

To hang ours, we screwed it directly into the wall using drywall screws and then I painted the heads white. It is really hard to find the studs in our walls so we used about ten screws. That way we were sure to hit one somewhere and all of those screws gave it extra support.

You could also use a heavy duty picture hanging kit if you prefer.

Oooh! Shiny!

Sometimes it's fun to look at yourself in the mirror fragments and make weird faces like you are a crazy person in some movie who looses it and smashes their mirror against the wall. 

Or maybe that's just me.


Moving on...

The mirror is such a fun new addition to our living room decor and I love how it reflects the light! I have plans for a couple of decorative pieces to go on either side of the mirror but I'm not sure when I will have the time to work on them. For now, it looks pretty good on it's own. :)

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And Live said...

I love this! Grouting around the mirror pieces instead of painting would solve the issue of getting cut from it. I would definitely have to do that since my little monkeys...err, children like to climb the walls.

Megan @ said...

I thought about grouting it but I was worried that I would loose the pretty blue/green tint that the edge of the glass has when you look at it from an angle. If you try it with grout, I would love to see how it turns out!

And Live said...

I was thinking about the same thing. Hmmm. Resin would be pretty expensive to use on a large mirror, but would preserve that effect.

Me and My DIY said...

Wow! I love this! It makes quite a statement on your wall. Well done!

Maureen said...


Very nice!


Megan @ said...

Thank you! I'm glad you like it. :)

being mom{me} said...

Wow this turned out awesome! It looks so great on the large wall and makes a really nice statement!
I'm here from the motivate me Monday linkup.
Rhiannon at Being Mom{me}

Patti @ Pandoras Box said...

This is brilliant...thank God you are not superstitious! Love the wall color, too!

Stacey Byrne said...

This looks great against the blue paint and I love the way it casts shadows. I bet it looks fabulous at night with a few candles burning underneath.

monica. said...

I love this! If I had anywhere to put it I would be making one, but my walls are overfilled :(

suzyq said...

Love this! What a great idea - am definitely your newest follower - would love to have you come by and follow back when you have the time!

the cape on the corner said...

that's awesome, and i love your wall color, too!

Megan @ said...

Thanks! That is one nice thing about moving - I have lots of blank spaces to fill. :)

Megan @ said...

Thank you! I'm so glad you stopped by and I am happy to have you following along with me. :) I will stop by your place and say hi soon!

Megan @ said...

Thanks so much! :)

Megan @ said...

Thanks! I haven't burned any candles in there yet but now that you mention it - I really want to try it out. :)

Megan @ said...

Thanks! Even if the superstition turns out to be true, I think it was worth it. :)

Megan @ said...

Thank you! I'm so happy you like it. :) Thanks for stopping by!

Beverly {Flamingo Toes} said...

This is such a fabulous, unique piece Megan!! I love how the shattered pieces look! Thanks for linking up - I featured you today!

Kaysi @ Keeping it Simple said...

I love this!! It looks so great, especially on that blue wall! said...

Your mirror looks amazing! Love the crazy person idea :)

Rebekah Greiman said...

I'm so glad that you liked my Mirror Art Craft and were able to make one for yourself. Great job!

KatBell said...

I love this mirror project. I have three large mirrors sitting in my garage from 3 bathroom remodels. All three are very thick and have a beveled mirror frame around them. Hmmm. I wonder how my husband would feel if I told him I was going to smash one of them?!! It might be fun to just tip one over and see what happens!!! Just kidding. Maybe I will make one for my future craftroom. Has anyone done it with grout? How did it turn out?

Megan @ said...

That would be a love of fun in a craft room! I haven't seen any with grout yet but if you try it I would love to know how it turns out.

James Stork said...

Nice job. I have some broken mirrors I have been keeping for projects such as this. I put out a request with friends, colleagues, and family for broken mirrors. I keep getting unbroken mirrors. Mirrors, mirrors everywhere. It is hard to smash a fifty to seventy year old mirror with a chip in the corner. There are two framed ones (chips covered by the frame) in my living room.