Turning a plain mirror into a work of art

Jennifer Bischoff
Jennifer Bischoff

Finding a suitable mirror is not usually a difficult thing to do.  Making it something special and giving it a new lease on life may be, however.  Today we’ll explore using a cloth to help create something special.


  • Water-based primer
  • Craft glue
  • Stanley knife
  • Academy sandpaper
  • Panel pins
  • Hammer
  • Off cuts of material
  • Paint stripper
  • Fine steel wool


  1. Begin by removing the glass from the frame.  Coat the frame with primer, then leave it to dry.  Apply a layer of PVA wallpaper adhesive.
  2. Apply strips of fabric to cover the frame, then apply more PVA over the fabric until it is firmly stuck in place.  When applying the fabric, let it run right to the end of each section of wood.  Trim away any excess fabric, using a Stanley knife.  Leave this to dry.
  3. Wearing protective clothing, apply paint stripper to the reverse side of the old mirror, following the manufacturer’s instructions.  Clean away the excess using paper towels dampened with paint stripper.  Continue until the reverse plate is clean.
  4. Using fine steel wool, rub areas on the reverse plate that would be worn over a period of time.
  5. Select a piece of fabric to back the mirror.  This can be the same as used to cover the frame with, or another piece, entirely.   Cut this to fit the frame.  Cover the reverse side with PVA, then stick the fabric, down.   Leave to dry.
  6. Reposition the board in the frame and replace the original backboard.
  7. The fabric on the frame can be distressed a little by sanding the frame if preferred.

Remember you are welcome to contact me at any time on bischoffjenni@gmail.com and in the meantime, just keep on crafting.


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