The Inspired Hive

Inspiration for a creative home


How NOT to paint a mirror

Happy Friday, everyone! Hope you're all enjoying the first few days of spring... and maybe enjoying some March Madness fun too! I'm not big on sports, but bracket fever gets me. Maybe because I can eat lots of delicious appetizers for FOUR days. Or maybe because I make half of my bracket based on which mascots I like best!! Ha :)

Anyway, I haven't gotten many projects done lately due to night shift. As I shared with you last week, I'm pretty much useless during night shift. Say I'm working three nights in a row. I have to stay up late the day before my first shift in order to prepare. Then I attempt to sleep all day the day of the first night shift. After the three nights are done, I have to sleep most of the day that day, and then somehow try to get back to normal life for a few days. I'm usually feeling very backwards and zombie-like. I feel like it takes me days to recover. Needless to say, nightshift is NOT my favorite. It totally works for some people, but I am most definitely not a night owl.

So since I haven't gotten anything new completed (several things in the works though!), I'm going to share my mirror disaster as I promised in my entryway post. 

Since I couldn't find a white mirror, I bought this black one on clearance and thought I could just paint it white. Sounds easy enough, right?

Mistake #1: I covered the mirror itself with newspaper. It slid easily under the edges and I thought it would be easier than trying to perfectly tape around the edges.

Little did I know, the paint would end up seeping through and causing the paper to get STUCK to my mirror UNDER the edges. Ugh! 

Mistake #2: I spray painted outside. This was bad in two ways. First, little tiny bugs found their way into the paint and got stuck. Second, turns out if you spray paint when it's less than 50 degrees outside, the paint will bubble and crack (I googled it. Apparently this is a common mistake. Oopsy!). It was NOT pretty.

So how did I fix these mistakes? I did a lot of sanding with a fine grit paper in between coats of paint to try to remove the BUGS (yuck) and the bubbles and cracked paint. Sand, paint, dry. Over and over. For at least 5 coats.

To fix my paper under the edges and seeping paint problems, I used a razor blade. It took a longggg time. 

Since it took so long, I decided it would be a good idea to make Mistake #3....
I used a green Scotch Brite pad directly on the mirror thinking it would remove paint faster than the razor blade. Well folks, don't EVER do this. I learned quickly that Scotch pads scratch mirrors!!! I was horrified. I still haven't found a way to fix this, but at least it's just a small area, and nobody probably notices but me and the hubby.

It all turned out okay in the end. I like how it turned out, but boy, was it a struggle getting there!!

If I were to do this again, I would...
1. Lightly sand before painting.
2. Tape around the edges of the mirror instead of using paper.
3. Paint in the garage (with the doors open) to prevent bugs.
4. Paint on a warm day.
5. Most definitely not use a Scotch Brite pad to clean off excess paint!

Has anyone else made some DIY mistakes they are willing to share?

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  1. Looks great! I nominated you for a Liebster award! Click here for details:

    1. Aww thank you so much! How fun! It might take me a few days to get around to this due to my crazy night shift schedule, but I will definitely do the Q&A asap!! Thanks again :)

  2. OH MY yes I have made many a DIY mistake...I once spray painted something when it explicitly said not to spray paint the second coat after so much wound up wrinkling and peeling off on that second was a clock from a family member and there was NO going back! LOL It wound up getting tossed. The mirror turned out looking nice despite the mistakes. OH night shift! I hear ya honey, I am on night shift all week but used to do the 3 days a week on nights and 4 regular. UGH! LOL

    1. Thanks for sharing Heather! I thought it would be fun to share some DIY mess ups here and there! Not everything is always easy in the world of DIY!!! Have fun with nights this week! I'm on a rotating schedule, so one more week of nights and then I'm back to days. Thanks goodness!!!!!