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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Floor Length Mirror Tutorial

Floor length Mirror Tutorial – No Kreg Jig Required!

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Today I want to share a quick tutorial on a simple way to frame a mirror. This frameless mirror was a freebie from a friend of mine who was moving and did not want to take it with her. It was actually double the width and I had it cut down the middle at this glass shop in town, which gave me two nice and long pieces to work with. The second piece is still frameless. Someday I will get to it…
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Now that I have shown you the end result, let’s start from the beginning:
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This is what the mirror looked like once I had it cut. It was a good size for a leaning mirror–all it needed was a nice thick frame!
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I knew that I did not want to finish the corners at a 45 degree angle, which simplified my project even more since I did not own any tools back when I did this. My wood planks were about 7 inches wide. So….this is probably the best way to tell you how I figured out the length of my four pieces:
Horizontal piece: width of the mirror + (width of wood X 2) – 1/2 inch.  So, if your mirror’s width is 20 inches and your wood planks are 7 inches wide, then your horizontal piece will be 20 inches + 14 inches -1/2 inch = 33.5 inches. You will need to cut two of these.
Vertical piece: Length of mirror – 1/2 inch. So, if your length is 60 inches, then your vertical piece will be 59.5 inches. You will need to cut two of these.
Note: Remember that these wood pieces will be sitting on top of the mirror. The -1/2 inch measurement is the distance from the mirror edge that will be behind the mirror, which when split by half will give you a 1/4 inch distance all around that will sit behind the frame. If you think that is not enough, you may increase this measurement to -3/4 inch or even up to 1 inch. I just wanted as much of the mirror to show once the frame was attached.
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Once I had my four pieces cut, I actually used glue and a staple gun (Can you see the staples?) to attach them. A Kreg Jig would have been phenomenal for this project, but I made it work without one. Yay! I added glue to where the sides join together, and then I stapled the joints to keep them together while drying. Not as sturdy as when you use screws, but it is sturdy enough. This is a piece that is never moved nor handled for any reason, so the staples and the wood glue worked perfectly fine.
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Once your frame is fully dried, you may give it a quick sanding and then stain it. I used dark walnut from Minwax. For a tutorial on how to apply stain, search the internet, I am sure you will find one. Lol! Now the fun part–lay the frame right side down, and lay the mirror on top facing down, just like the picture shows. The tricky part about this was making sure that the 1/4 inch distance I accounted for to sit on the frame was evenly spaced all the way around. Once I did that, I went ahead and attached these awesome mirror clips that I got from Amazon. To know what size to get you need to measure the thickness of your mirror. These are to hold a 1/4 inch thick mirror, but they also have some that are 1/8 inch for thinner mirrors. I used 8 of them, two on each corner.
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I think this mirror looks best when it is just leaning, instead of hanging it like a traditional mirror. You may also distress the edges of the frame a bit with sand paper if you want it to have a more rustic and worn look.
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So….that’s it. Do you have a frameless mirror laying around somewhere that could use a frame? Go for it, it is not as hard as you may think it is. Let me know if you have any other questions about this project!

How to Build Board - N - Batten Shutters

Hello friends! It’s been a while since I have shared with you another one of my easy projects, so here I am, ready to make your day! These shutters are super simple to make, and even though I don’t have pictures of every single step, I don’t think you will need them. You can make these in 1/2 a day, and once you install them on your bare window and see the transformation, you will wonder why in the world you waited so long to do this! Ready to tackle this? Let’s do it!
Materials needed:
Wood (cedar or pine work fine) – 1 inch thick X 6 inches wide boards. Make sure they are nice and straight.
Nails
Wood glue
Miter saw (or just get them cut at Lowes or Home Depot)
Hinges (optional – link below)
First, cut 6 boards (three for each panel) the length of the window (mine was 60 inches tall). Then cut 4 horizontal pieces (2 for each panel) that are the exact width of what your finished panel will be. To determine the width of your panels, just measure the width of your window and divide by half. My window was 36 inches wide, so each one of my panels ended up being about 18 inches wide. Once I had everything cut I gave all the pieces a quick sanding to make them nice and smooth.
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Make sure you measure each board since the 6 inch wide measurement is closer to 5 3/4 inches than it is to 6 inches. Once you know exactly how wide your planks are you can then determine the space between the boards, which, along with the measured width of the three boards should match the length of the two horizontal pieces.shuttersraw2 Glue the top horizontal piece with wood glue and place some heavy books on it to keep it from sliding (use clamps if you already have some). Do the same thing with the bottom horizontal piece. The distance from the top and the bottom can vary–you can place the horizontal pieces on the boards before gluing them and then step back to see if it looks good to you. If not, adjust the measurement until satisfied. Keep in mind that the smaller the length of the panel the smaller the distance from the top and the bottom to the horizontal pieces. Mine were about 6 inches from the top and the bottom.
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Once the glue dries you can turn your shutters over and nail them from the back for extra sturdiness. Use nails that are no longer than 1 3/4 inches long to make sure everything is well attached. Or you may use an electric drill and screws instead. The reason why I wait until the glue is semi dry to do this step is to keep the boards from sliding on me while I am trying to drill into them. But at the time I did not have any clamps to hold the wood steady. If you do have clamps, you can apply the glue, set the wood pieces where they need to be, clamp them, and then screw from behind.
I used a dark walnut stain from minwax that is gel based. It glides on like paint. It is one of my favorite colors for staining wood. Then I brushed a semi gloss polyurethane on the front and back since these shutters are facing south and will get a lot of sun, rain and snow. I am planning on doing the polyurethane once a year to keep the wood in the best condition possible and for the longest time.
Talking about wood, make sure you get good quality wood. Cedar is a great option if you want to spend a little more.  I bought pine to keep everything low cost. I will let you know how they are holding up after one year of facing the elements! =-)
The hardware that I used I bought from amazon. They are actually plastic hinges! Again, I wanted to spend the least amount of money, and wrought iron hinges, although beautiful, were out of my budget. These ones worked out great and they dressed up the shutters nicely.
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As far as hanging the shutters on the brick wall, that is one thing I did not do. We have a friend who is a contractor and he had the right drill and screws to get it all done perfectly. He spaced the shutters about an inch from the window. I wish I could tell you how to do it yourself but I have no clue! Lol!
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Do you have any bare windows that need some dressing up? I hope you liked this simple project and that you are now pumped up to build some yourself. If there is anything you want more detail about please let me know!
Thanks for stopping by.  -Beverly