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Do you think Marie Antoinette muttered those famous lines, “Mirror, mirror on the wall” as she flitted through Versailles? Well, if not those exact lines, I think probably something pretty darn close. Let’s face it, for better or worse, we love looking at ourselves. While there is a practical reality to mirrors, I also like to think of them as decorative and having the ability to reflect your beautiful surroundings.
There are some basic design rules about where one generally hangs a mirror. Mirrors are extremely decorative, can be rare and can create a depth and sparkle unmatched in interior design. Most people hang mirrors over chests in front halls and usually over fireplaces. The key is to get the right mirror for the right spot. This gorgeous Venetian Mirror works so well here because it reflects the opulence of the room. Paired with the Chinoiserie chest, it exudes a lifetime of travel and collecting one-of-a-kind antiques.
The classic starburst mirror over a fireplace is timeless, yet it becomes fresh and modern in this interior. The crisp white walls and modern furniture turn the gilt beauty into a sculptural work of art as it also reflects the simple beauty of the space.
Many of us have mirrors either attached to walls or inlaid within old woodwork that cannot be removed. A great solution to add interest to those mirrors would be to layer. Here is a great example of how to dress up a plain mirror with the use of artwork. I suggest that you not nail directly into the mirror, but hang the artwork from a wire nailed into the surrounding woodwork. Gorgeous.
Another, rather unexpected place to hang a mirror is over the bed, with one exception, in earthquake country. This round mirror could work in a traditional space or contemporary. The gold and back detailing is classic but still looks sharp against the clean, unadorned walls. It’s a great counterpoint to the rectangular headboard and adds sparkle to a romantic room.
Finally, and I digress from my discussion of mirrors on walls, to include mirrored furniture. Just like their two dimensional cousins, the mirrored chest or nightstand can be amazing. In this case, the mirror will reflect not only the other light in the room, but the objects on top which can be a glittering display. Regardless of the way you use mirrors, they will undoubtedly reflect your good taste.
Photos courtesy of flixya.com, housedesignet.com, desiretoinspire.net, evadesigns.com, decorpad.com, roys-antiques.com
Rob is a Los Angeles-based designer who has a background in art history and was an expert at Sotheby's auction house. Formerly the host of "Inside The Auction" for the Fine Living Network, speaker for The Learning Annex and contributing editor for Valley Magazine and LA Bride Magazine, he has spent years bridging the gap between the world of design and the general public.
His design sensibilities are varied and can work in both traditional and contemporary styles. His interiors have most recently been published in Renovation Style Magazine.