DIY Optical Illusion Mirror!

Bryan's Workshop
by Bryan's Workshop
6 Materials
2 Days

This project was inspired by Melissa J. Will!!

She's the original creator of the "DIY Optical Garden Mirror" project and you should definitely check out her original 'How To' and lovely website here:

My wife Mariko saw a picture of Melissa's mirror on Pinterest and HAD to make one for herself. icon

DIY Optical Illusion Mirror

Here's the finished mirror.

DIY Optical Illusion Mirror Supplies

We found all of the supplies at the dollar store.

For the build you'll need:

  • mirror
  • wood for the frame (fat for the frame and thinner for the open window)
  • hinges
  • knob
  • brackets (didn't use these)
  • staple gun
  • wood glue or super glue

All of the supplies cost about $6!

Remove the Frame
Remove the Frame

This cheap mirror had a plastic frame attached to it, so we removed it.

Create a New Frame
Create a New Frame

Here's the frame. Make sure you buy wood thick enough for the staple gun. You don't want the staples popping out on the other side.

Glue Together
Glue Together

Mariko wood glued before she stapled. If you don't want to wait for the glue to dry, use a fast drying super glue.

Cut Wood for Faux Window
Cut Wood for Faux Window

Tape over the corners with painters tape so it dries together and then cut the wood for your window.

Faux Window

It should look like this.


When the glue has dried, use your staple gun on the back of your frame and window. You can also cover the staples with duct tape for extra strength since this side will face down.


Mariko LOVES Annie Sloan Chalk paint! It just recently made its way over here to Japan at about a billion dollars a thimble full and it's pretty much the only brand of chalk paint available in Japan.

This is Annie Sloan graphite, dry brushed with Annie Sloan original. You'll notice all of my recent posts are exclusively these two colors.

Add Hinges and Handle
Add Hinges and Handle

This is cheapo dollar store hardware that we dabbed with green milk paint. We didn't use a primer, but you totally can.

Glue on Mirror
Glue on Mirror

The mirror is super glued to the back of the frame. Hot glue didn't work for us!

DIY Optical Illusion Mirror

The finished mirror!

DIY Optical Illusion Window
Homemade Optical Illusion Mirror

This is the mirror flipped.

My wife and I love being so inspired by a project, it makes us want to try it right away! Melissa created something totally awesome and doable and I hope you check out her page to see what inspired us. icon

Resources for this project:
See all materials
Any price and availability information displayed on [relevant Amazon Site(s), as applicable] at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Hometalk may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.More info
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 45 questions
  • Pma91311 Pma91311 on Mar 18, 2020

    Very clever...

  • Pat Pat on Mar 19, 2020

    My question is same as Angel’s. You must need a pretty reflection for this to work??

    I love 💕 this project. Truly an illusion.

    How about, instead of a mirror, put a poster size picture of a garden, vase of flowers, an old barn.

  • Jeanne Limoges Jeanne Limoges on Oct 24, 2020

    what is the background of the mirrir on the face did you put a picture on it

Join the conversation
3 of 285 comments