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How to Decorate with Mirrors

While mirrors may not be able to judge who is the fairest in the land, they can reflect a beautiful home and lush garden. Let’s look at how to decorate with mirrors.

My first encounter with the magic of mirrors was, of course, in the fairy story about Snow White and the evil stepmother’s talking mirror.

You can decorate with mirrors by hanging them to reflect the room’s best features, natural light, and outside greenery. Mirrors are versatile decor items. Current trends include antique, outsized, unusually framed, and shaped mirrors in unexpected places, like the kitchen.

5 Simple Tips for Decorating with Mirrors

The joy of decorating with mirrors is that they’re functional, elegant, and versatile. You can hang mirrors in any room, transforming and updating the space. They’re also appropriate for almost every design aesthetic. How can you elevate your home with mirrors?

#1. Add a Mirror for Checking Your Reflection

Woman looking at her reflection in a mirror.

The first and most obvious way to decorate with mirrors is to use them to check your reflection. Mirrors are a staple bathroom fixture, usually placed above the vanity.

Ensure the mirror is at the correct height—you don’t want to stand on tiptoes to do your makeup. Also, ensure that the mirror is well-lit and proportionate to the vanity in size and scale. A rule of thumb: Instead, go for a bigger mirror than a smaller one.

Most of us have a mirror in the bedroom. If you have the space, an elegant standing mirror is ideal for checking your outfit, from shoes to hairdo.

I love hanging a mirror in the entryway so you can give yourself a quick once-over before you leave the house. It’s also handy for guests to check their appearance while taking off their coats. As most entrance halls are tiny, a mirror will also create the illusion of space.

#2. Maximize Space with a Mirror

Home interior reflection in a mirror.

A second way mirrors can function is to maximize the space in a room by reflecting walls, windows, and doors back and forth.

This style trick is particularly effective in a small living or dining room, where you strategically place a mirror or mirrored panels to reflect light and create the illusion of a spacious room.

A classic styling approach is to hang a mirror above your fireplace, where the reflection suggests a room with greater depth and height.

Because the mirror is such a focal point, position it intentionally to reflect walls and ceiling or bounce back light from an opposite window. Another option is to reflect a statement chandelier or artwork, doubling their impact.

Measure carefully before buying a mirror for your mantelpiece. For maximum impact, the mirror should be either the same width or a few inches smaller than the mantelpiece. Choose a mirror generously proportioned in height and width, as a smaller mirror can look lost.

#3. Increase Natural Light

Mirror on a wall reflecting light.

Mirrors transform your home as they reflect all the gorgeous natural sunlight that streams in, bouncing around the room.

An interior design secret is positioning a mirror where the light falls naturally, reflecting it into dimly lit and light-starved areas and making the space feel brighter.

One trick is to hang a mirror at the end of a corridor or other narrow space as a light-filled focal point. Place the mirror on a console table with a plant or other decor to create a charming vignette.

The larger the mirror, the more sunlight is reflected and the larger and airier the room will seem. Go for the largest, best-quality mirror you can afford for the crispest, most sparkling reflection.

If you have a lush green garden, carefully place your mirrors to reflect light and greenery, bringing the outdoors into your room. The mirror functions as a gorgeous window.

#4. As an Attractive Artwork

With their decorative frames and shimmering surfaces, mirrors make fantastic artworks or decor items. There are several trends when it comes to using mirrors purely for decoration.

Fancy Frames

Mirror with fancy golden frame on a wall and flowers.

Make your mirror a focal point of a room’s design by selecting a magnificent frame. Match your frame to your design style, whether a glowing wood for a Boho interior or a glittering gold frame for instant glamor.

One of the newest trends in mirror frames is mixed media, combining a traditional frame with sculptural elements or fiber art: fringes, tassels, metal, mosaic, and tiles are all exciting alternatives. These items work well with organic, modern, eclectic, and Boho interiors.

Organic Shapes

Organic shaped mirror.

While mirrors are generally rectangular, oval, or circular, a statement mirror can be any shape. Current trends are towards organic, undulating shapes appropriate for biophilic or sustainable design.

Choose an unusually shaped mirror to add interest. If oversized, the mirror will be a dramatic addition to a room.

LYLDACER Yanliff Irregular Mirror Wall DecorLYLDACER Yanliff Irregular Mirror Wall DecorLYLDACER Yanliff Irregular Mirror Wall Decor


Arched mirrors echo the shape of windows and soften a dark or angular space.

Round mirrors add a touch of playfulness, especially when grouped.

Antique and Vintage

Vintage mirror an jewelry on a vanity.

Even when antique mirrors are no longer functional and a little tarnished, they make charming decor. In fact, the more worn the silvering on a period mirror, the more desirable it is as a work of art, as it tells a story of past lives and experiences.

The joy of vintage mirrors is that they’re unique and make a beautiful addition to a classical, traditional, or retro-style space. One of the most popular new trends on the back of Brigerton is Regency-core, where mirrors with ornate, gilded frames are a vital item.

I love to collect antique and vintage mirrors at markets and thrift stores. I wonder how many faces have been reflected in them and what their circumstances were. A bride on her wedding day, a young woman on her first day of work, or an excited young man setting out to prom.

Vintage mirrors are also sustainable, as you’re reusing and recycling rather than buying new items.

Gallery Wall

Gray bedroom with mirror gallery.

My collection of mirrors is displayed on a gallery wall, although I have some placed around the house (my husband says there are too many, but I know better).

Create a cohesive gallery wall by choosing mirrors of similar shapes, frames, or sizes. Or embrace an eclectic look by dressing the wall with mirrors and pictures.

#5. For Unexpected Glamor

Inexpensive mirrors can create surprisingly glamorous effects when used wisely. Let’s look at how designers use mirrors to up the glam factor.

Mirrored Walls

Small bathroom with large mirror.

Covering a wall with mirrors has a spectacular impact. It makes the space larger, brighter, and more interesting. This approach works well in small bathrooms but can also transform a dull living or dining room. Incorporating the mirrors into wall panels creates a classic French effect.

If you have an architectural feature like an alcove, highlight it with a bespoke mirror.

Kitchen Mirrors

Kitchen with a mirror.

The kitchen may not be the most obvious place for a mirror.  After all, this is not the fifties when a ladies’ magazine gave the following advice to young wives: place a mirror behind a kitchen cabinet door with space for lipstick to freshen up if the doorbell rings or hubby comes home.

Instead, a mirror can add a touch of glamor to an otherwise functional, sterile space. Many kitchens are also south-facing, making them chilly and dark, especially if they are small spaces.

One of the best kitchen mirror placement options is a mirrored backsplash. Choose a minimalist, sparkling mirror for a modern kitchen. Or a patinated style for a traditional or vintage kitchen. Choose mirrored or reflective tiles to make cleaning less demanding.

Mirrored Furniture

Another way to introduce the sparkle of mirrors into your home is through mirrored furniture, ranging from coffee tables to bed frames. A single accent item will be enough to add glitter to a room, especially if it is unexpected; more than that, it can look a little tacky.

When you place mirrored furniture, also consider how much cleaning will be necessary. A low-traffic area will be most appropriate.

If you’re nervous about investing in a mirrored item, try setting out a mirrored tray on a coffee table or dresser. You will get a gently diffused light sparkling and reflecting rather than an overwhelming glitter.

Lostcat 35 Inch Glass Mirrored Coffee TableLostcat 35 Inch Glass Mirrored Coffee TableLostcat 35 Inch Glass Mirrored Coffee TableFAMAPY Mirrored NightstandFAMAPY Mirrored NightstandFAMAPY Mirrored Nightstand


Final Thoughts

Mirrors are inexpensive, functional, versatile, and attractive decor items that maximize your space, brighten a light-starved room, and act as a gorgeous focal point. Consider using antique and vintage mirrors, unusually shaped and oversized mirrors, and mirrors with unusual frames to add interest to your decor.

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