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Monday, 23 December 2019

Mirror - Gold glitz to faux whitewashed wood

I picked up this sweet vintage round mirror with floral themed frame locally, along with a small cupboard for a just $30.

I liked it's feminine style for the bedroom but was not so in love with the gold paint finish! I wanted to paint it, but also wanted some depth in the finish to make the faux carved detail stand out. So I experimented and found a lovely effect that simulated white washed wood so it actually looked like it was real carving. Bonus!


I started out with the intention of painting it white and using some dark wax or glaze to emphasis the details in the 'carved' design which is actually a cast resin/plaster sort of product.


It was painted gold which didn't go well with my house style and looked a bit glitzy for me, so something had to be done. The mirror was sealed into the frame and was still in good condition so rather than remove it to paint I covered the glass with newspaper, and taped up around the edges and under any of the floral detail than sat above the mirror in places. It was all this flowing floral design, with bits that strayed away from the boundaries of the frame that I particularly liked about this mirror - it had a hint of whimsy that I found appealing.




I firstly painted on a section with satin finish interior house paint I had left over - the colour was almost white but with just a hint of grey.


I used a small paint brush so I could easily get the paint into all the small nooks and crannies of the design. Making sure to also paint underneath any parts that sat above the glass as they would be reflected in the mirror and show the original gold finish.


I then let it set for about 5 minutes and experimented with a soft damp cloth and removed some of the paint by gently wiping it across the top of the frame to see what it looked like - to my delight it had the effect of toning down the gold so it took on the look of wood that had been whitewashed, but leaving white paint in the deep parts of the design for depth. I had to be careful not to remove too much of the paint from the high points or the gold would reappear, so after a few goes at repainting here and there where I had been a little heavy handed with the cloth, I was satisfied with the look.


Floral detail before...



Floral detail after, but before drying...


I then let the paint dry and left it that because it dried with a nice flat finish, I didn't want to add any shine to the finish so didn't seal it with anything.

The mirror now hangs over a sideboard with white wax finish (as seen in my previous post) and is pictured decorated for Christmas with a free flowing slightly old world style, that to me has a slightly worn Miss Faversham feel to it - the faded bride character from Charles Dicken's 'Great Expectations'.



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