Using Mirrors to Improve Interior Design

Mirrors bring in light, style, and personality to raise the aesthetic value of a room. With unlimited potential, mirrors offer plenty of versatility to improve your space.

An essential tool in any designer’s repertoire, the versatility of mirrors cannot be understated, and they are one of the quickest ways to make drastic changes to a room. Choosing the perfect mirror will significantly raise the aesthetic value of the space it is hung, and you have plenty of options. They come in many sizes, shapes, and styles and can be used discretely and as an artistic statement.

Decorating with a mirror is a relatively easy task – keep in mind some of the tricks to maximize their potential.

Worthy of Replication?

Mirrors are commonly placed on mantles and hung from walls to add the illusion of depth and to enhance natural light. Suspended in the right location is a great way to make a small room feel more significant. One thing to consider is what is being reflected. For example, positioning a mirror that will direct your attention towards your popcorn ceiling will not have as dramatic an effect as if it were placed to catch the vibrant art piece on the opposite wall.

Remember, there are now two of whatever is being reflected, so make sure it is worthwhile!

Let There Be Light

Hanging a large piece of art on an empty wall might seem like a no-brainer, but once it’s up, you might feel that it overpowers the room. To fill that blank space, consider hanging a mirror instead. A mirror will fill the room with light and make it feel more spacious. Choosing a mirror with an ornate, artistic, and unique frame, rather than a simple edge, will allow you to have both a statement piece and a reflective surface.

You can turn an entire wall into a reflective surface for a more dramatic effect. This will visually double the size of your room and add a fantastical element. You can do this by creating a gallery wall, using round and square mirrors in different sizes, or by hiring a professional to install large panels that fit floor to ceiling.

Using Mirrors to Improve Interior DesignHang It, Lean It, Hide It

If you don’t have much wall space, a full-length floor mirror will do the job just as well. This also allows you to quickly move the mirror around if you need to make extra room or direct attention to a different aspect of your space. Floor mirrors can be positioned next to a door, in the corner of a room, or at the end of a long hallway.

Not all mirrors need to be displayed right out in the open to make an impact. For example, adding custom mirrors to the back of a bookcase and the recesses of a fireplace create subtle reflective surfaces that gently diffuse light. It’s a great way to draw attention to décor and amplify the light in spaces that may have shadows.

Bigger is Better

You want to go with the largest size you can afford and fit it in the space when it comes to wall mirrors. This way, you make the most of the sunlight during the day and maximize the mirror’s potential to enhance your room. When choosing a mirror for a mantle, keep the width at the same length as the mantle or a few inches shorter on each side. Let the mirror come within a few inches of the ceiling to add height to the room. This will elongate the wall and give the visual impression of a larger space through the mirror’s size and reflection.

Because mirrors create the illusion of depth and space, they can go a long way in making a small room feel bigger. However, don’t think you need to hang small mirrors in a small room—the bigger the reflective surface, the more light will fill the space.

Using Mirrors to Improve Interior DesignProperly Hang Your Mirror

When you hang a piece of art, it is often installed at eye level or five feet from floor to center. Hanging a mirror is a bit different, as the intention is to place it where it will provide the best reflection. In certain areas, like a hallway or entryway, eye-level allows you to check your reflection before leaving the house. However, it may be best to hang it higher to spread light evenly throughout the room in a bedroom or living room.

Be strategic in where you hang your mirrors. One of the oldest tricks in the book is to hang them where natural light is strongest. Catching natural light will make your room feel bigger and brighter and help reduce shadows throughout the space. One of the best locations for hanging a mirror is across from a window that gets plenty of direct light. This will illuminate your room and highlight accent features and plants that you decorate with.

With that being said, you can get creative with their placement. You don’t always have to hang a mirror in the most apparent places but should also consider more obscure spots. For example, hanging a tall ornate mirror between two windows will add length and charm to a room. Likewise, arranging a series of smaller mirrors in a group around an art piece becomes an attractive focal point. You can also create a mirrored gallery wall using mirrors with different frames for a more dramatic and creative approach.

Using Mirrors to Improve Interior DesignStyle Comes First

The versatility of mirrors is not just in what they reflect but also in the many shapes, styles, and sizes they come in. Choosing one that goes with your décor can add a subtle improvement to the room without becoming a statement piece. Creating a cohesive look between your materials will tie the room’s elements together. Matching the shape or frame of your mirror to side tables, window frames, and artwork will create a stylish aesthetic.

Aside from size, one of the more important considerations is the frame weight. Intricate, sculpted, heavy frames go best with large mirrors and traditionally styled rooms. When you have a mirror with an ornate frame, treat it like you would a fantastic piece of art and position to be shown off.

Frames that are thin, lightweight, and made from different metals go well in smaller rooms and follow a more modern style. It’s essential to match metals to keep the room feeling cohesive unless you are going for an eclectic design style.

Frameless mirrors are great for small and large rooms, especially when you want them to blend in with the wall and not become a focal point. These are a great way to bring in additional light without drawing attention away from artwork and other décor.

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