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What You Need to Know about Mirror Frames

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Mirrors are a wonderful addition to a room’s décor. They make a room feel more spacious, bright and offer guests the ability to check on their appearance from time to time.

While it might be harder to change the beauty of what is reflected in the mirror, changing the appearance of the mirror is a much simpler task.

The frame of a mirror has the potential to dictate the aesthetic of the entire piece. Light or dark, wood or metal, simple or ornate, frames will affect the overall feel of a mirror. Adding a frame to a mirror is an excellent decision but there are several things to consider when picking out the perfect frame for that classy piece of glass. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind to spice up a boring floating mirror.


Mirror Frame Design

Whether it’s in a bathroom, living room, bedroom or kitchen, the design of a mirror is a crucial aspect to consider. Because it is essentially the most noticeable decorative part of the mirror it is alright to make bold choices with the frame.

The first thing to consider is the composition of the frame. It can be made of gold, silver or bronze-colored metals to give it a regal and polished look or made of wood for a rustic, classic look. Plastics and wood can also be inexpensive options but at the cost of durability. For a creative flair, look for out-of-the-box options such as covering a frame in fabric.


The next thing to decide is the shade, tone and color. When working with metal materials, pick a shiny finish to create a bold eye-catching statement. Or you can use a matte, dull finish for a subtle touch accenting the more prominent pieces in the room’s design. With wood, the stain can make the mirror pop or recede. Darker shades of wood stain contrasting with the glass of the mirror will make it pop while lighter tones flush for a balanced, softer look.

Pick the style for the final touch. There are so many options, from ornate Victorian-style molding to simplistic modern box-design, the style of the frame is important for keeping the heart of the room’s design.

How Mirrors are Framed

Once you have figured out what design you would like, the next thing to do is find a professional who can put the frame on the mirror for you. Many glass retailers offer frame installation services and can do it professionally for a reasonable price. They may even have pre-framed mirrors and frame samples that you can view in person. But if you are a curious person, and want to know how they’ll be putting the frame on, keep reading. Here is a list of materials they might use to do the job:

  • Tape measure
  • Level
  • Specially formulated mirror mastic
  • Painter’s tape


They’ll most likely measure the mirror and decide what measurements to make the frame and select one with the proper measurement that fits your design choice. To install, they can use specially formulated mirror mastic and start at the bottom. If they know what they’re doing, they will be sure to place the mastic (adhesive) on the outer edge of the frame so that when the frame is pressed on to the mirror the mastic does not seep out visibly. Then they will press the frame onto the mirror or wall using a level to make sure it is straight. Finally, they use painters’ tape to hold it in place until it dries which will take about 24 hours.

Seems straightforward? Think again.

Things can get messy quickly when dealing with harsh chemicals in commercial adhesives. Also, keep in mind that mirror glass is relatively fragile and can break into sharp dangerous pieces if mishandled. For those reasons, mirror framing is best left to the pros.

Scotch Blue Painters Tape 3 rolls against a white background
ScotchBlue Original Multi-Surface Painter’s Tape
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CS-4300 Mirror Adhesive - Safe & Easy to Use - 10.1oz Cartridge
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A Few Other Things to Consider

Now that you know design and how your frame will be put on, here are a few other things to keep in mind before picking the design and a professional for your mirror.

Be sure to consider how heavy the glass is and pick a frame material accordingly. For heavier or larger mirrors, a thicker sturdy material is important.

Ask yourself if this mirror will be actually hanging or not. A mirror does not have to hang on the wall to provide an elegant touch to a room. Setting a large mirror on the ground or a smaller mirror on a surface to highlight pieces is always a viable option. If that is the choice you are making, consider this before picking the shape of the frame.

Think about what is in the room and what the mirror will be reflecting. What the frame surrounds will affect the appearance of the mirror as a whole. Watch out for reflecting storage areas or blank walls or contradicting design styles. Be mindful of the place you plan to put the mirror when deciding what frame to choose.


Now you have all of the knowledge you need for picking the perfect frame to spruce up a plain piece of glass. Contact a affiliate today to get started on your next framing project.

Please note, this article may contain links to Amazon products. As an Amazon Associate, earns from qualifying purchases.



Kyra Thompson

Kyra Thompson is the editorial assistant for USGlass magazine and Door & Window Market magazine . She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism with a minor in Cinematic Arts from Liberty University where she wrote for the school newspaper. She also helped start and run an independent-student-run news site. Kyra enjoys her hometown but also has fun traveling whenever the opportunity arises. She loves the arts and spends most evenings teaching dance. When not dancing, Kyra can also be found singing and acting. Find out more about Kyra on Linkedin.

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