Faux Window Deceptively Makes the Foyer Bigger

10 Materials
30 Hours

We begin with choosing a 12" X 12" Template that would be used for stenciling. So it has already had the pattern cut out of it where your Etching Cream will go through it onto each of the 9 mirror squares that you'll be using to make the window panes. You lay the stencil on top of the mirror square, tape it (using regular masking tape) to the counter or the mirror square to be sure it does not move. You then use a paint brush and spread lots of the Armour Etching cream on all the empty spaces on the template. After about 5-10 minutes, the etching is complete. You can use a spatula and scrape the etching cream off as best you can and put it back into the bottle. You won't be able to get it all because it will have dried on. (But the etching cream is reuseable. Just shake the bottle to mix the old with the new.) You now remove the template and wash it off thoroughly with water, dry it and set it aside. Now you wash all the remaining etching cream off of the mirror square, and dry it and set it aside. You have your designed window pane.
To make the window pane safe to handle and not dangerous for outsiders to touch, I put some white electrical tape around all four sides of each piece of the mirror.
When completed, I laid all 9 mirror tiles out in the pattern on the floor that I would put them up on the wall in.
Then I proceeded to put the cross-hatching up on the wall out of a textured border of wallpaper. The wallpaper had several different textures on it, so I used different ones for different parts of the faux window.
The next part was to make the border around the entire window frame. It needed to be much thicker than the pieces in between the panes. I mitered the corners like I learned how to do in my wallpaper course.
Then I started putting the window panes up in their spots. I used a special adhesive that holds glass and mirrors to construction projects and taped it using the painters blue tape to make sure it held in place before I placed the the other tiles. I didn't want anything slipping off the wall. I let it dry for 2 days before I took the tape off and made sure it was secure.
HOLD ON PEOPLE!!!! A two dimensional picture just does not do justice to WHY I felt I needed to put the tacks in. I wish you could all see it in person. The frame was just SO flat! It really needed something to give it some interest and texture. Hence the tacks. I debated what color they should be. A friend of mine who decorated for "Better Homes and Gardens" told me that every room should have something black in it. I decided this would be my black. I didn't want gold, because I already had gold on my table. I didn't want silver because the mirrors were silver. I didn't want white because then the tacks would disappear. I WANTED them to stand out. If you could only see it in three dimensions, I think you would all like it better. Please don't judge me. You haven't seen it in person. I've found everyone's criticism to be very hurtful and uninformed. Please be careful with your comments. You may think you are being helpful, but who says that your opinion is the correct one? ***Lastly, I put upholstery tacks spaced evenly around the frame to make it appear as if the frame was extra textured. It got really tricky to do in between the panes. I had to use a very small hammer so that I didn't accidentally hit one of the mirror panes and break everything and have to start all over again on that particular section. I put glue under each tack before I hammered them into the sheetrock. Some went in easier than others. Can't say what was behind the sheetrock, but the tacks are there to stay. Finally all the "window panes" were in place and the faux window was finished. I could then place all of the other decorations that went in the foyer back into place.
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Have a question about this project?

3 of 15 questions
  • Notsojoy
    on Jan 7, 2019

    could you provide a close up of just one of the panes and its frame? Maybe then others would get a better understanding of why the tacks work so well.

    • Kathleen
      on Jan 16, 2019

      Did you decide to go with white tacks? They don't look black.

  • Susan
    on Jan 16, 2019

    Very cute! I think it could add a lot of visual interest & light to a large, plain wall!

    Was it difficult to mitre the corners of the wall paper? How do you mitre it so it matches well?

    That would be the part I would worry about doing correctly.

    Also, great tip about including some black in each room!

    • Kelly Condie Thompson
      on Jan 16, 2019

      I learned how to mitre the corners in a wallpaper class that I took through the county extension a LONG time ago. It is one of my favorite and easiest things to do. I will tell you how. You let both strips of wallpaper cross each other perpendictally. Then put your putty knife on the inside corner going across the square of the wallpaper that you have just made when the two pieces intersected. So your putty knife is making part of an “x”. Remember to have it go from the INSIDE of the box to the outside -no matter what corner you are mitering. VERY IMPORTANT! Now, with a very sharp (new) blade, run the razor along the edge of the putty knife on top, as close to the edge of the putty knife as possibe. Push hard because you are cutting through 2 layers of wallpaper. Do it quickly, precisely, and with authority. Be sure to only cut through the wallpaper. DON’T KEEP GOING, and cut into your wall!. Now you can remove the excess pieces and what is left will fit together perfectly into a mitred corner. The excess piecss will consist of the top piece going one way and the bottom piece going the other way. Which means leave up your frame on the wall that you have been pasting up. Don’t take those parts down. And VOILA! Your first mitred corner. Any more questions, or if this is not clear, just ask. Maybe practice first with regular paper? You will see how easy it is! Thanks for asking!

  • Valerie Donahoe-Kyle Myers
    on Feb 11, 2019

    I just wanted to say that it looks........SPECTACULAR!!!!!!!

    • Jewellmartin
      on Apr 10, 2019

      The tacks make the frame look like real wood or leather. I agree, The tacks make the whole “window” pop!

Join the conversation

2 of 303 comments
  • Elizabeth Fernandez
    on Jun 7, 2020

    How clever. Effective at fooling the eye. Well done.

  • Em
    on Jun 8, 2020

    There are a ton of options if you want "texture" in the trim section of your local Home Depot. Just a thin strip of 1/8" plastic or wood trim would also do the trick.

    Very nice look.

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