How to Frame a Mirror

Transform the look of a bathroom by installing decorative trim around a plain plate-glass mirror.
How to Frame a Plate-Glass Wall Mirror

How to Frame a Plate-Glass Wall Mirror

Transform the look of a bathroom by installing decorative trim around a plain plate-glass mirror.

How to Frame a Mirror 02:30

James Lunday frames an old mirror with molding to create a masterpiece.
By: Janell Beals

Materials Needed:

  • 70-1/2" length 4 1/2" wide primed MDF baseboard
  • 70-1/2" length 3 1/2" wide primed MDF baseboard trimmed down to 1"
  • 70-1/2" length 3 1/2" wide primed MDF baseboard trimmed down to 1 1/2–"
  • 38-1/2" lengths 3 1/2" wide primed MDF baseboard (2)
  • 63-1/2" length 3-1/2" wide primed MDF baseboard
  • tape measure
  • paneling adhesive
  • extra-strength wood glue
  • caulk
  • level
  • latex paint
  • latex paint extender
  • extra-fine sanding pad
  • paint brush
  • painter's tape
  • tack cloth
  • drop cloth

Step 1: Measure Mirror and Select Frame Style

Determine trim style and positioning of trim around mirror to obtain measurements specific to mirror being framed. Use measurements to cut lengths of primed MDF baseboard. Tip: Have materials cut at a home improvement store and consider using style of door casings in home as inspiration for the look of the mirror frame.

Step 1: Measure Mirror and Select Frame Style

Step 1: Measure Mirror and Select Frame Style

Determine trim style and positioning of trim around mirror to obtain specific measurements. Use measurements to cut lengths of primed MDF baseboard. Tip: Have materials cut at a home improvement store and consider using style of door casings in home as inspiration for the look of the mirror frame.

Step 2: Prepare Work Area

Gather required materials. Lay out lengths of trim on flat working surface.

Step 2: Gather Trim Pieces

Step 2: Gather Trim Pieces

Gather required materials. Lay out lengths of trim on flat working surface to envision finished product.

Step 3: Paint Back Sides

Add latex paint extender to paint, lengthening drying time and minimizing brush strokes. Paint back side of trim along edges that will extend over edges of mirror. Let dry two hours.
Tip: The back edges will be reflected in mirror.

Step 3: Paint Backside of Trim

Step 3: Paint Backside of Trim

Add latex paint extender to paint, lengthening drying time and minimizing brush strokes. Paint backside of trim along edges that will extend over mirror. Let dry two hours. Note: The back edges will reflect in mirror.

Step 4: Paint Trim

Paint front sides and edges of trim. Let dry two hours.

Step 4: Paint Trim

Step 4: Paint Trim

Use soft-bristled paintbrush to paint front and edges of trim. Let dry two hours.

Step 5: Sand

Use extra-fine sanding pad to lightly sand surfaces. Wipe clean with tack cloth.

Step 5: Sand MDF Board

Step 5: Sand MDF Board

Use extra-fine sanding pad to lightly sand surfaces. The smoother the wood, the easier painting will be. Wipe clean with tack cloth.

Step 6: Glue Top Frame Together

Glue three lengths of MDF baseboard forming top frame with extra strength wood glue. Press pieces firmly together. Let dry two hours.

Step 6: Glue Top Frame Together

Step 6: Glue Top Frame Together

Using extra-strength wood glue, adhere three lengths of MDF baseboard to form top frame. Press pieces firmly together. Let dry two hours.

Step 7: Caulk Joints

Run a bead of caulk along seam joints. Smooth caulk line and wipe away any excess. Let dry one hour.

Step 7: Caulk Joints of Frame

Step 7: Caulk Joints of Frame

Run a bead of caulk along seam joints. Smooth caulk line and wipe away any excess. Let dry one hour.

Step 8: Apply Touch -Up Paint

Paint over caulk by lightly brushing layer of paint along joint.

Step 8: Apply Touch-Up Paint

Step 8: Apply Touch-Up Paint

Paint over caulk by lightly brushing layer of paint along join seam.

Step 9: Apply Second Coat of Paint

Paint a second layer of paint over fronts and sides of trim. Let dry 12 hours before installation.

Step 9: Apply Second Coat of Paint

Step 9: Apply Second Coat of Paint

Apply at least two coats of paint to wood that will be used as frame for your bathroom mirror. Let dry on non-stick paper for 12 hours before installation.

Step 10: Install Top Frame

Apply paneling adhesive to area where top frame piece will be positioned.

Step 10: Install Top Frame With Adhesive

Step 10: Install Top Frame With Adhesive

Apply paneling adhesive to area above mirror where top frame piece will be positioned.

Step 11: Position and Tape

Press frame piece onto adhesive, check for proper placement and ensure piece is level. Secure in place using clean-release tape.

Step 11: Position and Tape

Step 11: Position and Tape

Press wood trim onto adhesive, check for proper placement and ensure piece is level. Secure in place using clean-release tape.

Step 12: Repeat Steps

Repeat prior steps, installing two side pieces of trim followed by bottom piece.

Step 12: Repeat Steps to Attach Trim

Step 12: Repeat Steps to Attach Trim

Repeat prior steps, installing two side pieces of trim followed by bottom piece.

Step 13: Check Placement and Tape

Check all joints where trim meets to ensure pieces are positioned correctly and square. Make any necessary adjustments before adhesive begins to dry. Secure in place using clean–release tape. Let dry 24 hours.

Step 13: Check Placement and Tape

Step 13: Check Placement and Tape

Check all joints where trim meets to ensure pieces are positioned correctly and square. Make any necessary adjustments before adhesive begins to dry. Secure in place using clean–release tape. Let dry 24 hours.

Step 14: Caulk Joints

Run a bead of caulk along any gaps at joints. Smooth caulk line and remove any excess. Let dry one hour.

Step 7: Caulk Joints of Frame

Step 7: Caulk Joints of Frame

Run a bead of caulk along seam joints. Smooth caulk line and wipe away any excess. Let dry one hour.

Step 15: Apply Touch Up Paint

Paint over caulked joints and any areas of frame requiring touch-ups.

Step 15: Apply Touch Up Paint

Step 15: Apply Touch Up Paint

Once frame is attached to mirror, use small paintbrush to touch up any joints or areas damaged while hanging the frame.

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