How can I raise the height of the mirror on this vintage dresser?

by Austin

Yesterday, after 6 months of searching, I finally found the Art Deco-style dresser I’ve been looking for, and for a great price. I’m so excited! The finish is in solid condition and it has all the original hardware. However, its overall height (including the mirror) is 5’, over one foot shorter than I am. I’ve learned to accept that furniture from the old days wasn’t built for people of my height.

Does anyone have any ideas of how I can raise the mirror so I can add some height? Like most of these pieces, this mirror is attached to the back by wooden brackets, so I’m wondering if I could detach the current brackets and re-attach it with new, longer hardwood brackets (which I understand will be partially visible by however much height I add), to add some additional height.

Any insight or suggestions are much appreciated! I’m also okay with accepting that it’s safest to leave it as is.

Also, does anyone have an idea of what type of wood this dresser is made of? Oak? Walnut? Maple?

Thank you!

Rear view of dresser with mirror brackets.

Front view of dresser/mirror.

  25 answers
  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Nov 28, 2021

    Hi Austin,

    If you look closely at the back of the dresser, it looks like a wood veneer overlayed on wood, it is hard to determine what kind of wood the rest of it is. If you looked in the drawers it would give you an idea of what they are, which could be a different kind of wood vs the frame. Or if there are any identifying labels, you could contact the company, look underneath or in the drawers for logos.

    The mirror could be removed from the brackets and remounted higher, as you suggested with new stained to match longer brackets. The longer brackets would give a "leggy" appearance to the dresser-mirror link that might not complement it. Another way to handle this would be to remove the mirror and mount it on the wall minus the brackets.

    It looks like the base of the mirror-the wide curved part between the mirror and dresser-is mounted to the dresser top, it you removed that it is hard to tell what is underneath, meaning whether it is finished like the rest of the dresser.

    You have a beautiful piece of furniture to enjoy.

  • If you raise the mirror with new brackets you will will have a gap changing the look of the dresser. You may want to look into brackets that tilt, giving you the height you want. Check with Amazon.

    As for the wood, waterfall furniture is made from plywood and covered with veneer - often blonde wood stained to look like walnut. I have seen some with walnut veneer, as well.

    Your dresser is beautiful - great find!

  • Dee Dee on Nov 28, 2021

    I think I would just take the mirror off and put the dresser against a wall and position the mirror on the wall. This way you will not have to worry about brackets.

  • on Nov 28, 2021

    You can do you idea for sure! Another thought I had was to detach the mirror and hang it on the wall at the right height. That would solve the problem of how to get the new wood to match the finish on the old.

  • Janice Janice on Nov 28, 2021

    Another alternative you might consider is adding the height you want at the bottom of the piece. Measure the width of the current pieces that are touching the floor and fashion a base that could be screwed/glued on. Six inches might be a bit much but you could perhaps be happy with about 1/2 that to get the function you want.

  • Cheryl A Cheryl A on Nov 28, 2021

    you can take the mirror off and the wood brackets and place it on the wall for more height but if you make the pieces of wood longer you will have a large gap between the dresser and the mirror which may look odd - I think trying to raise it 6 inches may be too high for a dresser you will just have to try different heights to see what looks best. As far as the wood it is hard to tell by your photo- if the dresser seems to low to you you can add height by adding risers to the bottom of it-

  • Mogie Mogie on Nov 28, 2021

    I also would take the mirror off and hang it above the dresser. If you are concerned about the wood on the top of the dresser not matching after moving the mirror put a runner across the top.

  • William William on Nov 28, 2021

    The mirror sits on top of the dresser. The brackets just keep it connected and stable to the dresser. Raising the mirror with only brackets might make it a little wonky and you would have a gap under the mirror frame. Have you considered raising the whole dresser by adding wood corners on the bottom and bun feet?!

  • Tuula - Color Me Thrifty Tuula - Color Me Thrifty on Nov 28, 2021

    That is a lovely dresser. I would remove the mirror altogether and position it on the wall above the dresser at a height that works.

  • Annie Annie on Nov 28, 2021

    That is a beautiful dresser and old too. I agree with others who have suggested adding the height at the base of the dresser itself.

    There are quite a few options over on Amazon you can find ones that match your dresser

  • You could take the mirror off and find a replacement mirror that you can just hang freely on the wall. Hobby Lobby has a lot of different mirrors and you could paint/stain them to match. Otherwise, I would see if you could hang the mirror it came with onto the wall somehow.

  • We had a similar situation. We removed the mirror from the piece completely and hung it with picture hooks above the dresser at the desired height. Just make sure you get hooks rated for the weight and try to catch studs or use anchors. Those old mirrors are very heavy. Nice piece!

  • Maura White Maura White on Nov 28, 2021

    How about you just remove the mirror and hang it on the wall at the exact height you want? Then leave the dresser underneath it.

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Nov 28, 2021

    To keep the same design structure and retro styling of your dresser you might consider building a square platform to mount your dresser on. That way you’re not damaging the integrity of this historical piece. Enjoy your terrific find. Congratulations.

  • Kmdreamer Kmdreamer on Nov 29, 2021

    On the back they usually use the brackets that they use for fences to attach wire 2 are used and screwed in those could be adjusted to diffrent hights

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Nov 29, 2021

    Would you consider raising the entire dresser? You could add bun style feet to it. Another option is to hang the mirror, which is what I did after removing completely.

    I feel like you can remove the brackets that are there now and replace but I would probably go with something more substantial or 3 instead of 2 supports if you want to go another foot up.

  • Another idea is to add on a wooden slate on each side that is the same size behind it to extend it and bring it up.

  • Catherine Deirdre Rodden Catherine Deirdre Rodden on Nov 30, 2021

    I wouldn't mess with it. Your best bet is to add the height from the bottom. Either use some sort of furniture riser or build a whole base to put this piece on top.

  • Here is a video that shows how to fasten a mirror, if you buy longer brackets you can probably raise it up some:

  • Agnes Chrzanowska Agnes Chrzanowska on Nov 30, 2021

    beautiful dresser now it is time to fit into your decor color with a bit of chalk paint

  • Simple Nature Decor Simple Nature Decor on Nov 30, 2021

    Have you thought of detaching and put it on the wall with the dresser in front.

  • Looks like you should be able to do as you described, replace the brackets and separate the mirror from the trim on the top of the piece. There will be a gap of course and you'll see the brackets from the front but maybe you can make creative looking brackets that don't seem out of place. Hold onto the existing ones in case you want to sell off the piece later. Ideally, it's safest to leave as is.

  • Chloe Crabtree Chloe Crabtree on Dec 01, 2021

    Replace the two support boards with longer ones and screw it onto the back of the mirror and the back of the dresser.

  • I would suggest to detach the mirror and simply hanf it on the wall having enough or right height. However, your idea will definitely work!

  • Deb K Deb K on Jul 04, 2023

    Hello, you can unscrew the mirror and raise then screw it back on. Or you can hand it on the wall at the height you want.