Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Gold Leaf Mirror

I was on Craigslist a few weeks ago searching for a dresser for a client's guest room when I stumbled upon these large painted black mirrors.  A matching set of mirrors was exactly what I had been wanting for our bedroom.  You know, the Mint + Gold bedroom that I keep talking about.

The Craigslist Photo...
They were in terrible shape.  The frames weren't attached to the mirrors and there was paint and icky stuff all over them.  Two holes were apparent on the front of the frames too, all of this almost made me run.  But I realized that this was nothing this crafty gal couldn't fix. 
 I remembered a blog post by my DIY guru over at Little Green Notebook for applying gold leaf to a picture frame.  So I used that to get me up and running.  Check out that post here.
I picked up these supplies at my local craft store:
(2) Packs of 25 Gold Leaf sheets
(1) Pack of misc. brushes
(1) Gold Leaf Adhesive
(1) Gold Leaf Sealer

Quick Overview:
Step 1.  Clean the surface you are going to apply gold leaf to.  IMPORTANT! If you have an old surface with lots of paint layers be sure to use a paint remover and take them off.  If not, you will have a lot of problems with the product adhering to the surface.  Fill in any random holes with wood filler. Sand and make sure the surface is dirt free. Mirrors are really easy to clean up with a little razor blade. I was able to get all of the paint and Lord knows what else off of these guys with a tiny little razor blade.
Step 2.  Use the smaller blue handle brush above and apply the adhesive to the whole frame all at once.  Allow to dry for 5 minutes.
Step 3.  Start to apply the gold leaf sheets to the large flat surfaces while allowing the leaf to fall into the nooks and crannies.  Use the black sponge brush to gently push away the excess gold leaf.  Be sure to overlap the gold leaf so you don't end up with strange lines.
Step 4.  Do any needed touch ups.  I had to do a lot.  I just applied more glue where needed, let dry and added more gold leaf.
Step 5. Dust off all excess gold leaf with black sponge brush.
Step 6.  Clean off blue handle brush and use to apply the sealer to all of the gold leaf.  Allow to dry for at least 20 minutes. 

A close up of the mirror, you can see my little imperfections. This was not an easy project.
The backside of the mirror with the hardware that was used to attach the mirror to the frame.

Finally, I had to go into Michael's for help with this frame as the mirror was not attached to the frame and there is a large space in between the two.  $25 dollars later I learned that I could have just gone to a hardware store and picked up these brackets myself.  It needed those metal brackets screwed into the frame.  That was the only thing that would hold it in place.  I added the wire, used a 50lb nail and hook and up they both went. 

Happy Crafting!
Nicole B.


  1. Love this post - and I want your bedroom! Looks soooooo beautiful!

  2. I have a large mirror I've been thinking about painting gold or gold leafing. I've never gold leafed before so I've been procrastinating. Your mirrors turned out gorgeous and I think the gold leaf is a richer finish than if I just painted. Is the gold leaf product very expensive? Hello btw from a fellow PNW blogger!

    1. Hi Sherry. Once I got the feel for it, it went fast. The end result is worth the work. I like it much better than spray paint. And it wasn't that expensive. I would say all those supplies were less than $20. So not too bad. You won't regret it. Have fun!