Sunday, February 28, 2010

Antique Mirror Patina

Most of the projects I do are for others. 
And that's fine, because if I were to use all of my ideas and techniques in my own home,
it would look like a crazy-quilt! 
 Instead, I happily live vicariously at my clients' homes.

This weekend, however, I got the itch to do a small project for myself
- freshening up the laundry room. 
While this certainly isn't the most exciting room in the house, it is one that gets a lot of use. 
 And because of that, this room deserved some attention.
Inspired by a magazine photo,
I decided add some distressed mirrors to each of the cabinet doors. 
I measured the inner portion of the cabinet and had a local glass shop cut new mirrors for me. 
 With a little research, I located a patinating system at

Ideally this chemical process should be done out-doors on a warm sunny day,
 not a cold, grey February one. 
Never one to be deterred, I plodded ahead
determined to create some antique mirrors, today!
 The stripping agent went on with a roller. 
 Heat lamps kept the surface warm.
Good ventilation is a must.

When the paint curdled, it was time to wipe off the back of mirror,
revealing a shinny silver backing waiting to be tarnished.

The tarnishing agent was applied with a spay bottle, then checked often to see the progress. 
When the desired amount of distressing was reached,
the mirrors were rinsed with water to stop further chemical action.

A final step was to paint the back of the mirror with flat black paint. 
I've experimented with using gold, grey, brown and green backing, too. 
Each gives a unique look, but black suited my purpose the best.

After much wiping, watching, waiting, and wondering,
the mirrors were ready to be installed. 
Just what the room needed, a little p'zazz!


Now if only the laundry could get done so easily!


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