Ya win some, ya lose some - diy antiqued mirror gallery wall

I mean... I guess this wasn't a TOTAL loss - it doesn't look THAT bad. And in fact, post-editing (bahaha that's quite the disclaimer, isn't it? "Once edited, they don't look that bad!"), I actually kind of like them a tiny bit more...

But it for sure wasn't what I was expecting baha! I had grand visions of a lustrous, gold framed, large scale gallery wall of mirrors - so lovely, right? So when I came into a bunch of giant goldies (literally from the '80's) at a garage sale for $2 each, I knew where those bad boys would end up: DIY'ed into antiqued, mirrored beauties.

I followed this tutorial by one of my FAVORITES, Jenny Komenda, and while the frames DID look antiqued, they're VERY, very dark when looking at them.

I think this is one of those projects where it just looks not-so-great until styled, sort of like this project of mine in our entryway. So once I get some greenery up there in the form of plants, a little sitting nook (possibly right there in front of the mirrors), and just a whole lot more furniture in our master bedroom where this is located, it will be... how do you say... slightly ugly.

But that's okay! I know enough about DIY'ing and projects in general that styling is EVERYTHING. So once these frames aren't the only thing hanging out in that there room, it will come together a WHOLE lot better (or so I hope, because right now they remind me of decor out of the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland bahaha - they're just DARK!).

Here's how it went down (I varied from Jenny's tutorial a bit):

Starting with our blank wall, I got all of my gold frames together (the frames I got at that awesome garage sale were SUCH great quality - when they were purchased by that family in the '80's, they must have dropped a pretty penny on them. I had never seen frames so well cared for and framed, you know what I mean? Legit stuff) and set out what would end up as 2 different collages. The first one I did isn't pictured, but I sent it to a fab designer babe of mine who gave me a few tips in rearranging. This was the end result:

On a few of the frames I had to rewire them to run horizontally or vice versa. I was basically Rosie the Riveter, doing everything myself without Chad!

Once I was happy with the final spots for the layout, I took them all down stairs and starting hacking away to shed the (very legit) framing materials, just leaving me with the glass and frames. Then I taped off the backs and sides of the frames so that the spray paint wouldn't spread to the gold parts.

Outdoors we went, where I splashed the backside of the glass with 1 part white vinegar, 1 part water per Jenny's tutorial. Then I got to spraying. This is the spray paint I used and I was happy with it... except for the fact that I should have used 3x's the amount I had purchased. I ended up using 3 bottles on all of my frames - this is probably what's to blame for the resulting dullness. In Jenny's tutorial, the first coat will be your last, but because my project had more glass to spray, I ended up doing about 3 different coats because the first one BARELY covered what I needed it to. Also, I never wiped up the water and vinegar splashes like she did. By the time I went to wipe them up, it was already dry with the paint right over on top of it. Oh well!

Next, Jenny advised to spray paint the back black so that way a moody vibe could be achieved - well sheesh, if I could do it again, I would have added a ton more of the Looking Glass spray, THEN a very light black layer. That's okay though - you live and learn.

You really can see into them like mirrors, which was what I wanted! They're just darker than I expected. The walls are going to get painted of course and pretty much everything else in the entire room will change - again, the styling will help these bad boys out a ton.

So in the meantime, I'll chalk this one up to a DIY in progress. There we go!


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