Another Frame Job


Our budget was pretty maxed out after the installation of the granite and new shower so when we got around to the mirror, I knew we had to get creative.

I’ll flash you back to the before.  Oh Hollywood lights, how I don’t miss you.

To recap our demo, we knocked out the furdown and raised the placement of the light.  We thus had a little space to work with around the mirror and decided to frame it with some trim to make it look more custom.

It ended up just looking sad and wimpy though.  The piece of trim we selected created too small of a frame- we needed to beef it up more.  Doing so would make the mirror the focal point of that wall and make it really pop.

To simplify things, we wanted to leave the existing trim up but find an additional piece to place on the inside of the frame.  We chose to go with this guy:

I did worry that the mirror would be too small with all this framing so it took us a few weeks to finally take the plunge.  I have to say, though, it turned out great and we still have plenty of mirror real estate.  If you have a huge mirror on a double sink wall, a big, chunky frame is totally worth the mirror space it takes up.


Mirrors are the ultimate tool of vanity, and this mirror is no exception. For starters, it’s huge. Like, bigger than some rugs. The weird part is that given the way we designed everything, we could now see ourselves in the mirror while showering. And, naturally, everything looks better with a frame around it.

Julie had found a bathroom somewhere online that had a huge framed mirror, and of course she wanted it. The problem with mirrors, though, is that they really are tools of vanity… which means that the prices are absolutely criminal. So, I needed a solution. Cheap.

My first attempt with framing the mirror was actually with casing, a type of trim generally found around doors. Part of the issue was that there are small clips on the sides and tops of mirrors that help hold it to the wall, but they’re too bulky to place the trim over. To work around this, I put gobs of Liquid Nails on the back of the mirror and pressed against the wall. Once it cured, I cut the trim and again used Liquid Nails to glue it to the glass, but on the top and sides I let the trim overhang by about 50%, and then drove nails through it into the wall to help secure everything.

There was a problem: it looked wimpy. It definitely made the mirror stand on its own, but it just didn’t have the classic, bulky look Julie was looking for. So, while perusing the aisles of Home Depot one day I stumbled across the solution: base boards. Granted, these are huge base boards that, quite frankly, I think would look terrible when used for their stated purpose, but they were perfect for what I needed them for.

I did, however, have a bit of a problem: my original framing was not square. Unfortunately, the trim had shifted slightly while the glue was curing and had resulted in something that (mostly) looked square but was slightly off. I decided that the difference was negligible and went ahead and cut everything at a 45* angle anyway, hoping that the end result would look square… well, square enough.

So here’s how things went:

1. Cut trim. I measured at the longest distance for each side and made forward cuts at 45* from those points.

2. Flip over and cut again- I cheaped out and only bought a 10″ mitre saw. Good enough, right?

3. Apply glue to back of trim. Remember, glass is smooth so it’s hard to get things to stick, so don’t be shy- buy extra tubes!

4. Adhere to mirror. This can be a huge pain because most of the time when you press on one side, the other will pop up. In a parallel universe, your anti-self is having the opposite problem (if you don’t get the joke, consult your nearest physics department).

5. Tape until you get a weird frankenstein-looking mirror. Remember Step 4? Again, don’t be shy with the adhesives. Apply liberally.

6. Sand edges between where two pieces of trim meet. This was only necessary because Julie throws a fit if I don’t run sandpaper across every piece of wood I touch.

7. Caulk where edges line up. Remember, putty and paint makes a boat what it ain’t!

8. Paint. See Step 7 for clever limerick.

9. Enjoy!




Filed under Bathroom, Easy DIY Projects

13 responses to “Another Frame Job

  1. Erica schulz

    Ooo beautiful! And thanks for the limerick Chris !

  2. Looks so much better! Great job! xo Kristin

  3. I think I need to hire you two for my house =]

    • DO or DIY

      I am running out of rooms in our house… so we either need to move or invade other people’s houses. 🙂


      • Hey that works for me!! =] We have had guests living in our house for the past 3.5 months or so but now that we have the house back to ourselves we can really start working on some of our projects! If you read my blog you’ll see that we started the half bath renovation a few weeks ago. Hopefully it gets completely finished soon! There’s not a lot left to do!

  4. Lynn

    That looks beautiful…and inspires me to tackle the same size mirror in my master bathroom. Thanks for the inspiration and step by step directions.

    • DO or DIY

      Glad we inspired you, Lynn! Good luck on your own mirror project. Who knew something so easy could make such a big impact!


  5. You are absolutely amazing! I just love reading your blog! I am inspired and motivated to work on some projects of my own! I have you on my favorites list and want to give you the Liebster award! you can come on over to my blog at to check it out! Thanks again!

  6. Desteni

    what color granite did you put with the white cabinets in this bathroom?

    • DO or DIY

      It’s called delicatus dune granite. That granite usually comes with a lot of gold undertones but ours is actually more of the silver undertones with some red veining.


  7. Thomas

    the linen closet seems to magically transform do you have detail on what you did? I really want to put something similar in my bathroom.

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