After a week of joyful, challenging labor spent turning what had been a disintegrated shield mirror into a beautiful piece of artwork, I finally perfected it. I did not realize I would transform the object into such a beautiful item, and didn’t think to take a “before” photo. I had created beyond what I had imagined I could create, and I was excited to sell my mirror for $50. It wouldn’t take up that much storage space in the apartment, so there was no reason not to hold out for my asking price, and furthermore, my friend bought a mirror at a church rummage sale for $90, so my price was still on the low end.
The mirror originally had four protrusions, but two were damaged, and the third created imbalance when standing alone, so I was able to remove the three aforementioned eyesores, and leave just one which added an ornamental element to the mirror. This process left holes in the wood frame, which required some wood filler to conceal. Plus, the wood was imperfect, it needed sanding and staining, and it was the perfect wood to use my Miniwax® PolyShades® One-Step Stain and Finish, Bombay Mahogany, as this dark rich color both covers and protects. There were two spots where the wood got so light from sanding that i had to use some brown paint to give it a base beneath, but then I went over it with the stain.
Suffice it to say, it was a labor of love and pride, and this morning, I went to perform the very final step, which was to hang it up and photograph it, when it happened. CRASH! the mirror fell to the ground and the glass shattered. It was not salvageable. Ironically, it was the very first thing I did that caused this crash, which was to hook the twine in the back into what I had thought was a secure position, and it was me not listening to my gut, which said “hell no this nail isn’t strong enough to support the weight of this mirror!” … and so it was lost.
TOP FIVE LESSONS LEARNED FROM A BROKEM MIRROR
- Always photograph a project before starting it, as you never know the direction it will take
- Never let laziness creep in at the 11th hour, it could undermine everything
- Mineral Spirits will clean your paintbrush in a New York minute when it’s coated with stain (v. using paint remover)
- Being a perfectionist is imperative when you want to sell something. For this project, it meant making sure I used paint tape when I stained, and going over the edges again upon removing the tape with a very thin brush
- If you learn from your work, it’s not money lost, but knowledge gained