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DIY Secret Garden Optical Illusion Mirror

This project is much simpler than it looks!
I first saw one of these fun, optical illusion mirrors in a garden decor shop for $290. That's all the encouragement I needed to try and make my own!
This one cost just $12 using a thrift shop mirror, scrap wood, leftover paint, hardware, and adhesive.
And the GREAT NEWS? It does not require any complicated calculations because there's a simple way to do it.
In fact, with the method I used, you can create your own version for any size mirror (square or rectangular) in approximately one hour (plus painting time).
It is recommended that you have an electric saw (that can cut on an angle) and an electric drill. Both these tools will make it easier and faster to complete the project.
I am an environmentalist and avid bird lover first and foremost and would never do any anything in my garden that could pose a threat to wildlife. The birds in my garden have no interest in this mirror whatsoever.
Here' some basic to precautions to take whenever using glass or mirrors:
-Use sturdy mirror or glass than can stand up to your climate.
-Never place a mirror or glass panel in the flight path of birds.
-Never place a mirror or shiny glass where it continuously reflects direct sun.
-Check your garden art each season and do any necessary repairs.
For complete instructions and a list of the materials I used, please visit me at the link below.
I bet a garden-art loving mom would love one of these for !
There's a few tips on my blog for making it look really good. One is to be sure to use the same wood for the entire project. Also, adding hinges and a door handle really help pull off the effect.
The front and sides are painted blue. I used black paint on the back of the wood. I like how it gives a shadow effect. It also hides the hardware I used to attach the wood pieces together.
It's quite an effect, isn't it? Visit my blog for detailed instructions, plus more tips and variations.

Ask the creator about this project

  • Brenda Alferes Anderson
    Brenda Alferes Anderson Oakland, CA
    on Apr 27, 2015

    I love having a mirror in my garden. Although I do have a funny story. Due to some unfortunate circumstances we had the police in our yard one night. At one point I was returning to where every one was standing and an officer caught my reflection in the mirror and thought the suspect was returning, he had his gun halfway out of his holster before he realized it was a mirror and my reflection in it! Needless, to say we all had a very nervous laugh about it.

    • Empress of Dirt - Melissa
      Empress of Dirt - Melissa Canada
      on Apr 27, 2015

      @Brenda Alferes Anderson Oh. my. goodness. Since everything turned out fine, I will say, that is very funny!

  • From My Front Porch To Yours
    From My Front Porch To Yours Humble, TX
    on Apr 27, 2015

    Great project!

  • Huda Husnain
    Huda Husnain Kuwait
    on Apr 27, 2015

    Omg... pure awesomeness!!!

  • Jeannette Shorey
    Jeannette Shorey Willimantic, CT
    on Apr 27, 2015

    nice, very nice, something i would to try

  • Barb Rosen
    Barb Rosen Wilmington, DE
    on Apr 27, 2015

    I would love to have this pretty window mirror on my garden shed! Nice job, Empress!

Inspired? Will you try this project? Let the author know!