The Art of Antiqued Mirrors

For the past few years, many design professionals have increasingly specified antiqued mirrors for display in homes, hotels, restaurants, and high-rises.


antiqued mirrored wallThe following information sheds new light on how different applications can showcase antiqued mirrors. As always, we recommend consulting with an expert to guide you in making the right choice to convey the look and mood you’re seeking for a particular room. If you do not know someone, you are welcome to reach us on our contact us page.

Why use antiqued mirrors?

Antiqued mirrors give new life to a room and help to convey a mood, as when they’re installed on a ceiling to reflect candles. They can make a room seem larger than it is. And when installed as a kitchen or bathroom backsplash, they brighten the space in a stunning way. The applications and styles are limitless!

Watch out for the bait and switch

low quality preprinted antiqued mirrorIt’s unfortunate that many antiqued mirrors are simply “preprinted” greyish looking mirrors that do not remotely compare to an authentic antiqued mirror. Often, contractors choose a vendor that offers this less expensive option, resulting in a much less aesthetically pleasing product. It is crucial that once the client approves a sample (and the budget has been established), the contractor must use the specified vendor, regardless of increased cost. If you value satisfaction, seek the advice of an expert.

Antiqued mirrors are custom, or handcrafted, which is why they are so unique. Prices range from approximately $30 per square foot to well over $120 per square foot when powder diamond or authentic gold leaf applications are used.

Styles vary from the very simple to the more detailed stencil-patterned antiqued mirrors.

Examples shown here include the mass-produced low-range priced mirrors and the artisan-crafted higher priced mirrors.

medium range antiqued mirrorhandcrafted antiqued mirrorCompared to the imitation antiqued mirror shown above left, the image to the immediate left is a nice example of a lower priced mirror.

Notice that the pattern has more contrast than the one above it and isn’t as dull looking. The other mirror looks acceptable, but it lacks depth, compared to the picture of the handcrafted mirror on the right.

Antiquing mirrors, when crafted correctly, involves a lot of trial and error. This is what uniquely defines the process as an art, and it is by this gained experience that the artist is able to produce a product worthy of its distinct environment.

I want something that is soft
The examples below show a softer line, producing a reflection that is very subtle, almost velvety looking.

soft line golden hue antiqued mirrorsoft line silver tint antiqued mirrorThe image on the left shows a warmer design, with some golden hues, whereas the one on the right has a more traditional silver tint.

I want something with raindrops
By using different techniques, the artist can create varying and interesting patterns, including what appears to be a reverse effect (center), shadow (left), and speckled (right).


antiqued mirror raindrop effect

The level of antiquing can be increased and new hues of colors can be added, such as this medium antiquing with blue hue and rust undertones (below).medium antiquing with blue tint

I want more depth
To add even more interest to antiqued mirrors, gold, silver, or copper leaf can be applied to create a gilded effect (as seen below), and diamond dust can add interesting variations of subtle glitter to the mirror.

antiqued mirror gold leaf

I want patterns
Surprisingly, few designers are aware that antiqued mirrors can also incorporate stenciled patterns that will add a new layer of distinction and complexity to the design, so be sure to choose your designer carefully. From old gold to copper to Verdigris colors, these reflective patterns can add a unique feature to any room.

antiqued mirror gold design gilded copper antiqued mirror gilded forest antiqued mirror shadow effect antiqued mirror

Let your imagination flow
I hope this short article helped you get a better idea of the vast array of designs you can have for your project. Do not hesitate to reach out and ask us any questions.

About Jancik Arts International, Inc.
We are master craftsmen with more than 36 years of experience in art glass (including cast, stained, carved glass, antiqued mirrors) and art metal (railings, grilles, doors, gates, light fixtures, and sculptures) in residential, hospitality, and worship spaces. Click here to view our inspiring portfolio of stained glass work and more.

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Categories: Antiqued Mirror.