Friday, August 9, 2013

DIY: How to frame a mirror

This week, continuing with our 40 Day Wood Sale, our Allure mouldings are 20% off. These frames feature wider faces and deep profiles to attract your eye from a distance. This grouping of frames comes in silver and gold and you have the option to choose from classic beaded or stacked designs.
These frames are particularly great for framing mirrors. You can easily find plain mirrors at a number of hardware or craft stores for reasonable prices. Dressing up a drab mirror can create a completely different look that can transform an entire room. The great thing about mirrors is that they reflect light, often making a room appear larger. Some great places to hang bold mirrors are: hallways, mantles, dining rooms (they will also reflect candlelight, creating a romantic ambiance), and above bathroom vanities. Here, we will show you how easy it can be to DIY.

Allure profile 573237
For the purposes of this tutorial, we used frame 573237, Allure- Silver. We also have our expert, Mike, showing us the process.

First, gather your frame, mirror and backing board. Note: when framing a mirror, the inside lip of the frame will reflect on the front of the mirror. So, we recommend painting or coloring the inside lip so it is not just unfinished wood. For our example, we used a black permanent marker. But you could use paint (either to match the rest of the frame or a complementary color that matches the rest of your d├ęcor), frame touch up kit, or a permanent marker.

View of the back of the frame

From the front it is easier to get a better idea of what we are talking about. The top corner is where we used the marker.  To the bottom half, we did nothing to the frame so the look of unfinished wood is reflected in the mirror.

After the marker or paint dries completely, gently place the mirror in the back of the frame. Next, add the mounting board to the top of the stack. 

Now it’s time to secure all the pieces into the back of the frame. Here is where there are a variety of options:
You can use a point driver and flexi points, wire brads or glazing points.
This is the point driver. It makes securing the pieces very fast and effortless. If you have a point driver but are unsure about how to use it, see our instructional video.

The next option is wire brads. These can be found at any hardware or big box store.

To use them, simply hold at an angle and hammer them between the mounting board and under the lip of the frame like so:

Add them every few inches until you have gone entirely around the frame. Word of caution: Be careful not to nail into the back of the mirror itself, because there is a risk of chipping the mirror.

The next option is to use glazing points. For these, use a screwdriver or putty knife to push the pointed side of the glazing point under the lip of the frame like this:
No matter what method is chosen, make sure to secure everything all the way around the perimeter of the frame.
Now it is time to add a protective backing. Either use Kraft dust cover paper or Tyvek. We suggest using Tyvek if the mirror (or picture) is going to be hanging in an area of high moisture, like a bathroom. Otherwise, Kraft paper will work just fine.
To do this, apply a strip of ATG tape to the back of the frame (as close to the edge as you can get it). Side note: Wood glue can also be used to do this. However, the downsides to using glue are the drying time and the possible mess it can create from the glue oozing out all over the back and sides of the frame.

Once the glue or tape is applied, place the Kraft paper or Tyvek down (we used Tyvek) and place the frame on top of it. Tip: make sure to cut the paper bigger than the frame. We are going to trim the rest off in the next step.

Flip the frame back over so you can trim off the excess. Here, we are trimming the paper with a utility blade held at a slight angle. Holding the blade at a slight angle allows the paper to be cut a little bit on the inside of the edge so you won’t see the paper sticking out of the back when you hang it on the wall.

Or you can use this dust cover trimmer which makes it particularly effortless to cut straight lines. The way the tool is made, it automatically cuts the paper a little bit on the inside of the edge, so no access will be seen from the front.

Voila! The pieces are secure and the protective paper is on.

For mirrors or other heavy objects we always suggest adding corner brackets to each corner of the frame. Here’s why: once it is hanging on the wall; the weight of the mirror rests on the top of the frame which may cause the corners to separate.

Again, since mirrors tend to be heavy and large, we are going to hang this using the Hangman Mounting  System, which can hold up to 200 lbs. This makes it undoubtedly easy to secure to the wall and always keep it level.  When using a wire with a nail, sometimes the frame can become tilted and will need to be repositioned.
To use the Hangman Mounting System, position the bracket in the center of the back of the frame and predrill holes. Remember: only drill holes as deep as the screws so as not to run the risk of drilling through the front of the frame.

Once your holes are predrilled, use a screwdriver to secure the screws into the back of the frame.

To see the full process of hanging something on the wall with this method, watch this video.
And you’re done! How easy was that? What a major difference framing a mirror can make to a space. What do you think of the results?


  1. Wow Good Quality of Design ! I love that kind of design so I think it will fit in may Latest Flat Screen Mirror TV .. If you have a latest update in your design please inform me .. I am very interested :) Thank you .. Cheers!

  2. Perfect ideas on making diy with mirrors, I have seen your instructions on YouTube video named “Hangman Picture Frame Mounting System” Here is some more framing mirror to make diy.

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