How do I attach something to old wood without damage?


I inherited an old Hall Tree from my grandmother's house. The mirror had been broken so it just has a big empty space. I thought I might just cut cardboard to fit and use wrapping paper as decoration instead of trying to replace the glass. Is it safe to just use duct tape to hold in place? I don't want to ruin the finish on the wood even if it would be on the back where no one would see it.

  14 answers
  • on Aug 06, 2020

    What about using command adhesive strips?

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Aug 06, 2020

    Here's some picture frame retainer clips that might work for you:

    Or, you might visit your local 2nd hand store and look at some of the pictures there in frames and see if that could work for you in holding your cardboard in place.

  • GrandmasHouseDIY GrandmasHouseDIY on Aug 06, 2020

    Agreed on the command strips, they make them specific so they can be easily removed without damaging any surface their put on.

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Aug 06, 2020

    I would use command strips. They are easy to change out. Duct tape is so sticky, it would leave a residue that be difficult to remove.

  • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Aug 06, 2020

    Why not put a photo of your grandmother there where the mirror was? you could make a cardboard frame to make it sturdy and cover with scrapbook paper or even decoupage it before adding the photo and maybe even add a favorite memory or something she may have said a lot that is special to you.

    • See 1 previous
    • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Aug 08, 2020

      You could frame it (Hobby Lobby has great prices on frames at 50%off) I plan to do a memory photo of my sister with info about her on the bottom of the the photo. You could even do a collage of photos

  • If you are just using cardboard, you can attach it using a hot glue gun. That will not damage the surface.

  • Mogie Mogie on Aug 06, 2020

    If this was mine I would use command strips since they can be applied and removed without any damage. But unclear if you want to know how to keep a mirror in place or something else.

    A picture would allow us to give you better and more relatable answers.

  • Betsy Betsy on Aug 06, 2020

    Hi Catherine: The jury is in, Command Strips are the best :) Or hot glue :) Good luck

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Aug 07, 2020

    Hello. I would use some thin lattice and short screws... to make movable tabs much like a photo picture frame.

  • Eventually the duct tape will get melty and gooey, it’ll likely damage the wood, as would any tape. Hot glue will likely be impossible to remove. The clips Redcatcec mentioned would be a better route.

  • What about chalk board paint where the glass was? Or fit in a piece of art on a canvas?

  • Jeremy Hoffpauir Jeremy Hoffpauir on Aug 11, 2020

    Do you have a picture of it? This may help provide a visual so I can recommend the appropriate solution.

    Hope this Helps! Jeremy -

  • Homeroad Homeroad on Dec 10, 2020

    I would either paint it with chalkboard paint and turn it into a chalkboard to write messages on.

  • Agnes Chrzanowska Agnes Chrzanowska on Dec 23, 2020

    Do you think you can add a picture of it?

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