Mirrors are one of my favorite ways to enhance the ambiance of a room. Whether you’re looking for mirror decorating tips or just want to see some pictures, this guide on how to decorate with mirrors will help you add some beautiful mirrors to your home design.
I have to admit…I have a bit of an obsession with mirrors.
They are one of my favorite ways to add some personality to a room.
And I’m not the only one…even the Palace of Versailles (built in the 1600’s) has a room called the “Hall of Mirrors” with large arched mirrors all the way down one wall.
Since people have been decorating with them for centuries, they must have something going for them!
Of course, most of our homes (including mine) aren’t nearly this grand.
So my approach to decorating with mirrors is a little more scaled back.
But no judgement if you have the space and want to try to replicate the Hall of Mirrors in your house 🙂
Now let’s look at some great ways to decorate with mirrors.
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How Do You Decorate A Room With A Mirror?
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First, we’re going to cover some tips on how to decorate a room with a mirror.
1 | Get The Right Sized Mirror
The first tip has to do with the size of your mirror.
If you’re hanging a mirror above something, it shouldn’t be wider than the piece of furniture it is hanging over.
It also shouldn’t be smaller than half than the width of the piece of furniture, unless you are using it in a grouping or gallery (but more on that later).
Having said that, going taller is almost never a problem. The taller a mirror is, the more of a statement it makes.
2 | Hang It At The Right Height
The next question people ask is how high to hang mirrors. So here are some guidelines:
- The bottom of a large mirror should be about 6 inches above the back of the sofa
- Large mirrors above a fireplace should be hung fairly close (less than 4″ above) or actually sitting on the mantel.
- Treat smaller mirrors that are hung on the wall like a picture, and position them at eye height.
- Small mirrors usually look better in groups.
3 | Check the Reflection
When you’re deciding where to put a mirror, be sure to check the reflection.
Having a pretty light fixture or window reflected will make the room look brighter and bigger.
And a view of the focal point or other decor makes the room feel more inviting.
Don’t make the mistake I made once in my bathroom, and have the mirror reflecting the toilet (if you can help it).
4 | Match Your Style
Mirrors come in all kinds of shapes and styles.
To make sure that it will fit in with your decor, get one with a shape and frame style that goes with everything else you have in the room.
5 | Feng Shui Your Fireplace
While I am not a Feng Shui master by any stretch of the imagination, I have always been interested in its design principles.
And apparently, placing a mirror above the fireplace is generally a good Feng Shui practice.
It’s considered a “water” element and the fireplace is obviously a “fire” element. So the two balance each other out creating harmony.
6 | Make A Dark Room Look Brighter
If you have a room that doesn’t get much light or is painted a dark color, adding a mirror is a great way to brighten up the space.
All you have to do is place a mirror opposite a window or near a lamp or chandelier so that the light is bounced back into the room.
Just make sure to pick a mirror that is big enough to have an impact.
7 | Make Small Spaces Feel Bigger
Because they reflect light (and the view) back into a room, large mirrors are a great way to make a small room feel bigger.
In my mother’s small living room, we added mirrors to the front of a floor to ceiling storage cabinet.
Not only do the mirrors conceal the storage area, but they make the room seem twice as big.
The other thing that helps make this room look bigger?
The mirrors are installed in the corner.
That way they reflect what’s on the perpendicular wall, and make it look like it continues on. It’s hard to tell where the wall ends and the mirror starts.
This is especially effective if the corner is opposite from the door to the room, since it is the first thing you see when you walk in.
8 | Create A Focal Point
If you have a room that doesn’t have an obvious focal point (eg. there’s no fireplace or large window), hanging a mirror in an interesting frame can help draw your attention.
Choosing a frame that is finished in the same color as the piece of furniture it is hanging over will make them look like a cohesive unit.
9 | Create A “Window” Where There Isn’t One
Adding a window-shaped mirror to a wall that doesn’t have a window can give the illusion of one. Which is especially helpful in brightening up a dark corner.
This window frame in my stairwell came from an old building that was being renovated on the property where I got married. My ex-husband upcycled it into a mirror for me…and it has lasted a lot longer than the marriage did 🙂
Another way to do this is to fill the space between windows with a mirror, and hang curtains on either side.
It creates the same feeling as a wall of windows would and makes the room feel bigger.
10 | Lean A Full Length Mirror Against The Wall
There’s something that feels very elegant about having a tall mirror leaning up against the wall. (It reminds of me old-school Hollywood dressing rooms.)
While they are mostly associated with bedrooms and bathrooms, full-length mirrors can also make a statement in a living room.
Regardless of where it is placed, make sure the mirror is well-secured to the wall so that it can’t fall over.
11 | Don’t Be Afraid To Go Large
When you are decorating with individual mirrors, bigger is almost always better.
So don’t be afraid to make a statement.
Buy mirrors that are at least a size or two bigger than you think you need.
Living Room Mirror Decoration Ideas
Now we’ll take a look at mirror decoration ideas for specific rooms that we haven’t really touched on before. Starting with the living room.
1 | Hang A Mirror Behind The Couch
In a lot of cases, I use mirrors where other people would use pictures.
Which is why I’m a fan of putting a mirror on the living room wall behind the couch.
Especially when it’s decorative one like the large sunburst mirror in this picture.
2 | Bookshelf Mirror
If you have plain bookshelves in your living room, and want to dress them up a little, mirror is your friend!
Glue thin strips of mirror to the vertical boards to create a subtle but unexpected sparkle in the room.
3 | Mirror Behind Shelves
Another option is to install mirror on the backs of your bookshelves.
This works well if your shelves have more accessories than books.
The mirror reflects what is on the shelves giving them more depth and making them look brighter.
4 | Mirror Surrounding The Fireplace
Adding a mirror surround for your fireplace isn’t something that everyone would want to do.
But when there is a beautiful view in the reflection (like these windows) or if your room is small, it might be just what you need to make your fireplace into the focal point.
Dining Room Mirror Decor Ideas
I think dining rooms are the perfect spot for a gorgeous mirror.
It’s a room where ambiance is appreciated.
And mirrors enhance the light from candles and chandeliers to create a magical feeling.
1 | Panel Mirrors
While this dining room is much larger than any of the rooms in my house, I love the idea of using mirror inside the panels.
It’s kind of like a mini version of the Versailles Hall of Mirrors.
And I think it would work just as well on a smaller scale.
2 | Two Arched Mirrors
For a simpler look that still has a big impact, stand two leaning full length mirrors at one of the table.
These two arched mirrors provide an amazing focal point in this minimalistic dining room.
Remember to attach them securely to the wall to prevent them from getting knocked over.
3 | Mirror Over The Buffet
Hanging a mirror over the sideboard or buffet is a tried and true decorating technique.
If you want to shake it up a little, go with a bold mirror shape like the sunburst mirror in this pretty dining room.
4 | Large Antiqued Mirror
For an extra glam dining room mirror, use antiqued mirror instead of the regular clear kind.
It automatically adds that old Hollywood vibe to any room. And it looks amazing with candles.
5 | Mirror China Cabinet
If you have a china cabinet in your dining room, it provides a great opportunity to add some mirror.
Cover the backs of the shelves with mirror and it will make the whole room look special, especially if you add a light at the top.
Bedroom Mirror Ideas
Mirrors in the bedroom can be a little tricky.
You need them to see what you look like before you leave in the morning.
But the bedroom is the one place where you may not want to have extra light reflected back into the room from the windows. If this is the case, be careful where you place the mirror so it doesn’t directly face the window.
1 | Mirror Behind The Nightstand
Putting a mirror behind your nightstand is a great way to add interest to your bedside table decor.
It also enhances the light from your bedside lamp, which can be helpful if your light fixture isn’t as strong as you would like it to be.
2 | Mirrors Above The Headboard
Hanging mirrors above the headboard is often purely decorative, like the three round mirrors in my bedroom.
But if you have a particularly dark room, you might also want a large mirror above the bed in order to reflect the light from the ceiling fixture.
3 | Armoire Mirror
If you don’t have a lot of wall space in your bedroom, but you do have a large armoire, consider gluing mirror onto the door fronts.
It will make the armoire look special and provide a mirror that’s long enough for you to see your outfit.
4 | Add Decorative Mirror To Furniture
If you have an old nightstand that needs a little updating and you don’t mind doing a DIY project, try painting it silver and decorating it with mirrors!
You can also add a little sparkle to your bedroom, by trimming the edge of your headboard with mirror.
5 | Mirror Closet Doors
Although mirrored closet doors are sometimes thought of as a thing of the past, they are a life-saver for small bedrooms.
They provide a full-length view without taking up any wall space while also making the room look bigger. A triple win!
Bathroom Mirror Decorating Ideas
Mirrors are a given in the bathroom.
But that doesn’t mean they have to be boring!
1 | Venetian Mirror
All bathrooms have a mirror above the sink. But it doesn’t have to be boring!
I took down the builder-grade mirror and put up this Venetian mirror* in my guest bathroom. It makes a huge difference without costing a lot of time or money.
2 | Modern Circular Mirror
Hanging a large round mirror in your bathroom is another way to make things look a little different while still providing the over-sink viewing functionality you need.
3 | Easy DIY Mirror Frame
If you are stuck with one of those large plain mirrors that many houses have these days, adding a DIY mirror frame may be the solution.
I love these mirror frame kits* that come in different colors and just glue over the edges of the mirror.
But you can also make your own DIY frame like this one from Hello Hayley.
4 | Tri-Fold Makeup Mirror
A folding makeup mirror is one of those not really necessary bathroom accessories that really makes the room feel special.
Who wouldn’t feel like a queen sitting in front of this mirror to do their makeup every morning?
Garden Mirror Ideas
Since I’m big on gardening, I couldn’t leave outdoor garden mirrors off my list.
I just love the way they look!
1 | Arched Garden Mirror
Propping a mirror up on an outdoor console table does the same thing for your deck as it does for your living room.
It expands the view by reflecting whatever is across from it.
And in this case, almost looks like a window.
2 | Shuttered Outdoor Mirror
This shuttered mirror is similar to the upcycled window mirror I mentioned above. But it’s hung on an outdoor wall.
That’s the great thing about using window frames as mirrors. They’re meant to stand up to the elements so they can survive quite well outside, especially in a protected location.
Well, that’s it for our mirror decorating ideas! Hopefully, you have learned how to decorate with mirrors and are inspired to add them to your own home.
Now that we’ve looked at ways to use mirrors in decorating, the next question most people ask is what to do with the space around the mirror. You can find out how to decorate around a mirror HERE.
Other Home Decor Ideas You Might Like
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