In my three decades as a designer, I can honestly say that I've never done a project without mirrors. Yes, they're beautiful decorative materials that add style and sparkle to a room. But they can also open up a space, creating a 'window' on any wall. And there's a practical angle, too: They can remedy poor lighting, alleviate awkward architectural conditions, and distract the eye from a less-than-great view. To put it simply, they are problem solvers — and there are always problems to solve!
In a Dining Room
Mirrors can expand space, such as in this dining room, where a large, stately version reflects the adjacent Venetian mirror. Imagine how gorgeous this is at a dinner party!
In a Living Room
Mind the details. Mirrored panels like the ones lining this alcove can be so elegant—but don't just slap them up. Large sheets of mirror can look commercial. Create a sectioned pattern: The traditional French style is much more interesting.
In a Hallway
This hallway was dreadfully dark, but silver tea paper, a 1940s mirrored console, and a Moroccan mirror dispersed the available light to make for an exquisite ambient glow.
• When hanging, think carefully about what the mirror will reflect. You want to pick up a great scene, like a pretty chandelier.
• Clear mirrors belong in places like closets and bathrooms; beyond that, I prefer an antique finish for a soft, romantic touch. Look for allover patina, and no wide, dated bevels!
• Mirrors show dust and fingerprints, so keep them clean with a lint-free cloth. Spritz your glass cleaner directly on the cloth, not the glass, to avoid damaging the frame.
This story originally appeared in the May 2016 issue of Natipernavigare.