Mirrors have been used for centuries to accentuate decor. The shape, style and construction of a mirror (carefully chosen and placed) can be as much an art piece as any fine painting. Mirrors can be found in almost any conceivable shape, from round to square, to free-form. The materials used to construct mirror frames, including but not limited to wood, metal, glass and plastic, can lend a quality of uniqueness that can make an otherwise simple mirror seem custom-made for a particular spot on a particular wall. Little wonder that do-it-yourself decorators can spend hours trying to decide which style, color, shape and construction makes the right mirror.
Anyone engaged in a do-it-yourself decorating project quickly learns that mirrors are pretty much basic building blocks. It doesn’t matter what type of room you are decorating. Everything from the kitchen to a baby’s room is the right place to include decorative mirrors. Mirrors open up the smallest spaces and create the illusion of spaciousness.
France’s Sun King, Louis XIV, discovered this concept back in the 17th century and insisted on the liberal use of mirrors in the Palace of Versailles that had the effect of multiplying everything. Not that Louis had to worry about opening up small spaces, mind you. Using mirrors in what became known as the Hall of Mirrors created a sense of infinity that knocked Louis’ socks off.
The multiplier effect is still one of the major methods that decorators use in their selection and placement of mirrors. Defining what role mirrors will play is something the do-it-yourself decorator needs to consider seriously. It’s not enough to just want to fill up a space on the wall with something.
Some spaces cry out for the strictly decorative like a mirror that enhances the decor in such a way that the entire space, even the entire room, takes on a whole new ambiance. But you need to consider all of the factors involved in choosing and placing decorative mirrors. Be especially aware of windows and lighting, as these factors can help a mirror transform an entire room.
Another equally important reason for choosing a mirror is for its strictly functional value. If your decorating project is a do-it-yourself one, you probably have a strong sense of where you want functional mirrors. One of the most obvious places is in the bathroom. You need well-placed mirrors as you shave or apply mascara. There is nothing worse than getting ready to face the day, pausing at a mirror as you are about to walk out the door, and discovering you missed something.
Another place you will want functional mirrors is in the bedroom and, if you are one of the lucky ones, in your dressing area as well. Here, a full length mirror or even facing full-length mirrors, will go a long way towards finding exactly the look you are going for. You’ve probably noticed how much kids like to look at themselves in a mirror, so don’t forget the children’s rooms when you are thinking functionality. Infants and toddlers can be happily distracted while you go about the business of changing diapers and dressing the little ones.
Keep in mind, as you map out your DIY decorating project that even functional mirrors can also add style and flare to the room. Mirrors reflect light and color wherever they are placed, and functional mirrors are no exception. Consider how the appearance of the mirror itself is going to change the appearance of the room. Whether you are going for effect or functionality, the mirrors you choose are going to have a major impact on the appearance of the room or even the entire house. For the do-it-yourself decorator, it’s an opportunity to let your creativity and vision go to the next level and really wow your family and friends.