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Fun Magical Mirror

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There is a simple way to make this!

I created this optical illusion mirror for my garden, but it would also be fun indoors in a child's room or at the end of a long hallway.


I made mine from a plain mirror and some wood. You could also use painted cardboard for a lightweight indoor version.

And, good news: there are no special measurements or calculations needed. It's much easier than it looks.
Time: 4 Hours Cost: $20 Difficulty: Medium
Make a life-size drawing of your plan on a big sheet of paper or cardboard. There are more design ideas for this project here on my blog.
  • I used 1x2 pieces of wood and used a piece of the wood to draw the plan, tracing it on the paper.
  • Start by drawing the outside frame. This should be slightly bigger than the size of your mirror.
  • Next, draw the inside section. Again, draw the outer frame, then add the inner pieces.
  • Label every section so you can tag each piece of wood as you cut them out.
Place wood on top of plan, and cut out each piece. Tag each wood piece to keep track of them.
Assemble the pieces with wood glue and metal joiners on the back. Then prime and paint the entire thing, front and back. You want the back painted because it does show in the mirror reflection.
Add hinges and a door handle to complete the effect.
Here it is in my garden. And yes, never place a mirror where birds fly or where it will directly reflect sunlight. Mine is in a quiet, dark corner, giving a magical effect.
It's a really neat effect. I hope you'll make one!

Materials used for this project:

  • Mirror (frameless)   (thrift shop)
  • 1x2 wood   (home improvement store)
  • Paint (exterior latex)   (home improvement store)
See all materials

To see more: https://empressofdirt.net/optical-illusion-garden-mirror/

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!