Time to reflect: clever new ways to use mirrors in your home
A gallery wall, a staircase display, or one statement piece: however you style them, mirrors add personality to any room in a flash
A mirror is a great addition to any space. Not only will it make your room feel bigger and brighter, the right one (or collection – there’s no need to hold back) can give you the chance to earn a few extra style points, too.
The power of reflection
It might seem obvious, but a mirror’s purpose is to reflect. Of course, they do much more than that, which is why designers and interior stylists love using them so much.
A mirror reflects light back into a space, but only if placed on the right wall – somewhere where it can catch the light from a window, for instance, and bounce it back into the room. So before you hang your mirror, check what it will reflect – if it’s the back of the door then it’s not going to make your space look lighter, so try a new position. Likewise, a mirror reflects space, so try a large floor design propped up against a wall in a small area and see how much bigger the room feels.
Of course, the fun part of introducing a mirror into a room is that it can reflect your personality. Do you love the delicate carving of a French-style mirror or are you more of a vintage fan? How about unusual-shaped ones or handcrafted wooden designs? A mirror can become the statement piece of a room, while still offering plenty of added benefits.
Create a gallery
‘We’re definitely seeing more people using mirrors to create a gallery,’ says Katherine Lemin, Partner & Buyer, Wall Decor. ‘They’re no longer just a functional item.’
A gallery of mirrors is a great way to create interest on a wall – try creating one above your sofa, up the stairs or in your hallway. Start by arranging the mirrors on the floor first to work out how you want them displayed, then make paper templates of each and temporarily fix to the wall with masking tape. Once you’re happy, secure the mirrors in place, making sure you use the correct fixings for your wall.
Create a gallery that’s based on shape, such as round or lozenge-shaped ones, or keep an eye out for vintage mirrors complete with hanging chains. ‘Styles that showcase real workmanship, such as our handcrafted metal ones, are popular right now,’ says Katherine.
Make a statement
Another trend Katherine’s noticed is a demand for oversized mirrors – and she’s already on the case, working with suppliers to produce some exciting designs. Picture a large round one above a contemporary sideboard, styled with some statement ceramics, and it’s easy to envisage how a room can be transformed by the addition of a mirror.
Likewise, there are some mirrors that just command our attention, being both practical and stylish, like the freestanding Design Project by John Lewis No.049 mirror, which has a concealed clothes hook on the back, along with a shelf, while the lower tray is perfect for accessories such as bags and belts. It just demands space to shine and can be used to create a mini dressing area where you can arrange your outfit for the following day, all ready to go.
‘Look out for shaped mirrors, such as diamonds – ideal for hanging in unusual spaces to accentuate a room’s decor,’ says Katherine. ‘We have plenty in our collection if you’re looking for something different, including designs which involve printing on glass. We’re also introducing FSC [Forest Stewardship Council] sourced wooden mirrors, which means the wood’s origins can be traced.’
Shop and hang with ease
Choosing your new mirror and getting it home is easy. ‘Most people like to shop and browse mirrors in store then arrange for them to be delivered,’ says Katherine. ‘We also offer a mirror hanging service – whether just one or a gallery of several – so you can get the look you want.’