September 8, 2011

Epic DIY Post: Knockoff Pottery Barn Eagan Mirror

This is the story of how a dream became a reality.  That may be a little corny, and it's completely dramatic, but I am so impressed I actually completed this project and can't wait to show you all the results!  So let's begin, shall we?
It all started awhile ago.  I was at a party and noticed a pretty mirror above a girl's mantle.  Said mirror was beautiful, but when I found it at Pottery Barn a few weeks later the $700 price tag made it apparent it would never be mine.
  A few months later I found a tutorial for a DIY version of my coveted mirror over at the Lettered Cottage.  Awesome, right?  But as a novice with all things wood, I was completely intimidated and really didn't even bother looking over the tutorial that seriously as I assumed I wouldn't be able to execute it.  A few months later, I found the same tutorial on Pinterest, pinned it for fun, and would look longingly at it every so often.  Fast forward to last week...I'm talking with a friend (who also happens to be a DIY aficionado) and I mention said mirror and tutorial.  We look at it together, this time in actual detail, and light bulbs go off...this really isn't that hard!!!  When her dad (a wood master) offered to help me conquer the project, the deal was sealed.  So my Labor Day was spent laboring...laboring over my beloved knockoff Pottery Barn Eagan Mirror.

Because I am such a novice with this stuff, I am going to write this tutorial from that perspective.  First off, consult the amazing tutorial and even more awesome diagrams found over at the Lettered Cottage.  I relied heavily on their tutorial, but also changed things up a bit, so this is my version!

With that knowledge in your arsenal, round up your supplies:

  • 2 x 2ft.x4ft. wood boards (mine were plywood)...found at any home improvement store
  • 4 x 8ft. molding pieces flat bottom, rounded sides, 3/4 inches wide
  • wood glue (I used Gorilla glue)
  • Liquid Nails mirror glue (it's a silver tube specifically marked mirror)
  • flat brackets and wood screws to secure the two pieces of wood together to form one big mirror
  • tack nails
  • 15 8 inch square beveled mirrors (spring for the beveled...although they're a little more expensive, it will make your mirror look much more expensive)
    • These can be found in the candle section at most craft stores (AC Moore, Michaels, etc)...they're a little expensive ($5 each at my stores), so try to find a coupon...I used a JoAnn's 20% off entire purchase at Michaels (they accept them)
  • miter saw for the trim cuts
  • hand saw for the rest of the cuts
  • wood filler
  • 2 cans spray paint, plus some acrylic paint (I used white because it went better with our decor)
And now for the step-by-step:
1. To prep for your project, paint the two board and 4 pieces of molding.  Mine needed two coats.  The boards were taking a really long time with the spray paint, so I did the first coat with acrylic paint and the second coat with spray paint.  Make sure to give yourself about 24 hours of dry time before using the painted pieces to make a mirror.
ready to paint (plus an extra frame for another project!)

2.  Lay the two wood boards side by side.  Lay each bracket half on one piece of wood and half on the other, so that they will be joined together.  
                        ***This is where we actually had the bulk of our issues, so let me explain a couple of things.  For one, my wood was only 1/4 inch thick (because it was cheaper) which meant pretty much every screw was too long.  To remedy the problem, we cut paint sticks down and used them behind the brackets to build up the thickness of the wood (I'm going to lean my mirror on the mantle and not hang it, so it will not be a problem...if you plan to hang, you may want to go for the more expensive, thicker wood to begin with).  Also, we used a layer of wood glue to help make sure the two boards would be firmly together.
3.  With the two pieces attached, measure out a 27 x 44 1/2 inch rectangle.  Use the hand saw to cut off excess.
4.  Use miter saw to cut molding pieces into 45 degree angles.  Use wood glue and nail tacks to attach molding pieces to edges of mirror to frame it.  **Do not nail tacks completely in....they will be removed eventually, but are being used to make sure the wood glue makes a secure connection.**
5.  Now that your frame is in place, measure out two pieces of molding  for the length of the mirror.  Again, use wood glue and loose nail tacks to secure the two long pieces of molding to the wood board.  I really recommend using one of the 8 inch square mirrors as a guide to make sure the molding is in the right place (it should line up right below or above the mirror with no gaps).
6.  Using the mirror glue, attach the first mirror to one of the corners.  With the mirror in place, use some wood glue (no tacks necessary) to glue down a small piece of molding to the open edge of that mirror.  Repeat the glue mirror, glue molding, glue mirror, glue molding process until the mirror is completely filled in.
7.  Remove the tack nails and fill in the holes with wood filler.  Clean up mirrors, touch up paint, make your mirror look spiffy!  The Lettered Cottage added rosettes to their mirror, but I couldn't find those locally.  One day, I may go ahead and order them online, but for now, I'm pretty happy with how the mirror looks.

I am so pleased with my new mirror I can hardly stand it!  Best of all, it really wasn't that difficult to complete (although my friend's dad certainly did the bulk of the work...I just watched and held pieces for the most part!).  And it was completely affordable....a grand total of $115, including a mask I needed to spray paint (I am 6 months pregnant after all...can't have those VOC's invading baby boy's lungs!).  

So, that's lovely mirror project.  What do you all think?  Do we need the rosettes?  Digging the white?  Tell me, tell me...I'd love to hear from you.


  1. Amazing. Truly. And I love the soft white with the soft blue. So relaxing!!!

  2. It looks really great, Michelle! Make me one!!! haha

  3. You have officially been pinned! This is going under the Projects for Hubby to Do. This is really cute...

    Would love it if you would link this up to our Rockin' link party going on now at RoCa and Company. Here is the link: Come and show off what you got. Hope to see you there...

    Remember...YOU ROCK!!

    Carmen @
    RoCa and Company

  4. I've pinned this too! It looks amazing :)

  5. Great project! I have already talked the hubs into it. Question.... what are the final measurements of the piece? The one from Potter Barn is HUGE! I know yours is a bit smaller, which is what I am looking for.



Make my day...leave a comment