Monday, January 14, 2013

Using Wall Mirrors to Decorate Your Home

Mirrors are ingenious accent pieces that can make or break a room. They can range from the traditional vanity mirror whose sole purpose would be to help you check your appearance, and others that exist purely for aesthetic purposes (these are more of reflective glass pieces than mirrors, really). 

Large wall mirrors can be rather imposing objects, but a bit of strategic decorating can make them into great focal pieces. In small rooms or spaces, large mirrors often serve to widen the space or cast light on dark places. In others, they can be more decorative than functional. 

Consider placing a large wall mirror in the entry hall or by the door, where you can take a quick look at your reflection before leaving the house, or just as you are about to enter. You can also place one right across a window that has a particularly nice view, so you can easily view it from any point in the room. Placing a mirror above a mantel also creates a good place to rest your eyes. 

If you prefer large wall mirrors that are primarily decorative, choose ones that fit the general form of the rest of your furniture. Are most of the chairs and shelves in your room angular or curved? Round mirrors often go best with furniture that are also rounded, and angled mirrors do well for those that are more linear. Shape can often be a unifying aspect of your furniture, and a large wall mirror placed in the right spot can further accentuate that.

If you’d rather be a bit more creative with your mirrors, you can spice up one that you already have instead of going out to buy new ones. For a more traditional (and nature-themed) feel, use two branches crossed at the bottom of a round mirror and then carefully form them around the rim. Or you can use a wreath to round off a large mirror during the holidays. There’s really no limit to your imagination in this regard.

Because large wall mirrors tend to be a visual focal point, you’ll need to decide on the frame finish that goes best with your home décor. Many mirrors sport traditional wood tones, though you can also go for the more fancy gold and silver finishes. Your choice should also depend on the level of formality your furniture will have. Try to create depth by playing with contrast, choosing dark frames against light walls and light walls against dark walls. 

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different materials; wall frames can be made of wood, metal, bamboo or stained glass, though the more fancy frames can also have jewel stones and colored glass embedded into the material. If you have an elaborate wall, balance it out with a simpler mirror frame, and vice versa.
Keep in mind that the shape of your mirror is also important. Large wall mirrors that are more vertical don’t need to hang above furniture, as they look better alone on a wall. For those that are more horizontal, try to keep the furniture above which it hangs slightly wider than the mirror itself.

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