How to Make a Ghostly Antiqued Mirror

Transform a modern mirror into a spooky, antiqued looking glass with this simple technique. In a Gothic black frame, it's perfect for Halloween, but this look can work year round if you use a warm wood, silver leaf or gilt frame.

Mirror, Pumpkins and Vase with Black Feathers

Spooky Mirror and Halloween Decorations

Materials Needed:

  • mirror
  • black satin spray paint
  • acetone
  • flexible-neck lighter
  • protective eyewear
  • leather gloves
  • kitchen fire extinguisher
  • cinderblock or two bricks (optional)

Prep and Paint Mirror and Frame

Remove mirror from frame and clean, then thoroughly dry the mirror's surface. Move mirror outside to a place where it's safe to light a small, controlled fire; for instance, a concrete or asphalt driveway, fire pit or metal work surface are ideal. Set mirror on bricks or cinderblocks to lift it up off work surface. Lightly spray front of mirror with black satin spray paint in a random pattern, only painting about 40 percent of the mirror's surface.

Tip: Experiment with different colors of spray paint to achieve different looks. If needed, place frame on newspaper or a drop cloth and paint it with black spray paint or any color of your choice. Allow to dry.

Add Acetone to Mirror's Surface

While wearing leather work gloves and eye protection, open acetone and slowly pour a small amount onto mirror. Allow acetone to spread over mirror, covering most of the surface.

Mirror's smoky look created with acetone.

Add Acetone to Mirror's Surface

Ignite Mirror

Make sure a small kitchen fire extinguisher is readily available. While wearing work gloves and eye protection, use a flexible-neck lighter to ignite acetone. Fire will burn for few seconds and extinguish by itself. Allow mirror to cool before placing back in frame and hanging.

Tip: Keep kids and pets away from your work area, and always use caution and commonsense when working with fire.

Ignite Mirror

Light Fire to the Mirror

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