Thrifty Crackle Mirror Project

Our downstairs powder room came with a perfectly functional 1990s silver mirror and 1990s light fixture. I actually like it well enough, but it just didn’t suit the 1890s house. I can’t say that I have found the perfect mirror and light fixture, but sometimes just a little thrifting can improve things a bit……..but not always.

1990s mirror and one shade missing light fixture

I was hoping to find a weathered looking white mirror, with a bit of gold or silver revealed underneath – like a crackle finish. I would have loved to have found an antique white mirror at a flea market or antique shop, but it’s a pandemic after all, and we can’t visit crowded markets or tiny shops. I had in my treasure trove a Walmart $10 mirror from way back when. I think I have another one somewhere, but I just needed one.

Walmart $10 mirror

I taped the glass over with painters tape – and brushed on some Elmer’w white glue. I had an old bottle in my basement, but I think any white glue would have done the trick.

An old container of white glue

I brushed the glue all over the frame of the taped mirror.

Elmer’s Glue brushed on the frame
I brushed the glue on wherever I wanted a crackle finish to occur.
Elmer’s glue over the frame

While the glue was still tacky, I brushed on white latex semi gloss paint. There’s always part of a can of white paint lurking in my basement, waiting for another project.

Brush the white latex paint over the still tacky glue

As the paint dried over the glue – the crackle started to appear.

White crackle finished mirror

The white paint crackled nicely, revealing the gold paint underneath. This project used glue, paint and a mirror that I had onhand already. I’m not sure that the mirror has the perfect proportions for my powder room. I think I will keep an eye out for a slightly wider frame – but I would do the same paint treatment again. It was easy! Oh, and I replaced the light fixture shade with some seeded glass shades that I bought online.

There are still some plugs to finish up (you can see one in dangling in the mirror), some hardware to replace and some trim to install, but things are looking better in our powder room.

Maybe when this pandemic is over we will get back out to some flea markets and little shops and find some more old things that we don’t need. For now, we are almost set!

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