Refinishing a mirror: tutorial

In a recent post I ranted mentioned how it came about that I decided to re-finish this black mirror that had been hanging out in the nursery closet with only two of its three knobs, looking sad and causing me much frustration (it often hit me when I tried to get stuff out of the closet).  I thought it might be helpful to post a quick tutorial for how I did this–and post pics of how it turned out!  Here’s what I started with:

Trying to both save some money and avoid additional Anthropologie-related knob shenanigans (see previous post for my rant here) I opted to use these quite inexpensive knobs from IKEA (I believe each package of 6 was $1.99).  I couldn’t decide at first if I should do aqua or green, so I bought a package of each!

I mostly followed this tutorial from the fabulous folks over at  Their example was much larger (a table) but I mostly followed the same process.

Step 1: Gather supplies and head outside.  Here’s what I gathered: the mirror (with old hardware removed), painters tape, newspaper, plastic “teepees,” primer, paint, and brushes.  Cover any surface you don’t want to get paint on with newspaper and tape down if windy.

Step 2: Rough up the surface to be painted with 100-grit sandpaper.  I used a sandpaper block to help get into the grooves and corners.  Once you’ve sanded enough to remove any glossy-ness (I didn’t go down to the bare wood), remove any excess dust with a cloth.

Step 3: Tape newspaper to the actual mirror so that you do not get paint on the mirror (you just want to paint the frame!) like so:

Step 4: Use a small brush to apply a thin coat of oil-based primer.  I used KILZ odorless primer.  You may find it helpful to use the plastic “teepees” (pictured above) to keep the mirror from sticking to the newspaper below it.  Let the primer dry.  Here’s the mirror after a coat of primer:

Step 5: Apply two thin coats of latex paint (I used no-VOC Yolo paint left over from painting the nursery built-ins).  Allow paint to dry between coats.  Carefully remove the newspaper and tape.  Let the mirror dry for a few days to make sure it is quite dry before working with it:

Step 6: Add hardware (aqua knobs it is!), hang, and have fun!

What do you think?  Have you had luck with re-finishing a sad, old mirror?  Do share!

Posted in DIY

2 thoughts on “Refinishing a mirror: tutorial

  1. Pingback: My awesomely free side table revealed! « the2bedroomblues

  2. Pingback: Fabulous Etsy finds for the nursery « the2bedroomblues

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