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Outdoor mirror


From NZ Gardener magazine

Add colour and create the illusion of space: upcycle or build one from scratch

You will need:

Upcycling option: A window frame with the old glass removed, sandpaper and filler, paint – Resene Quick Dry Primer and topcoat, mirror glass cut to fit, clear glass silicon sealant and applicator.

Cost: $85 excluding paint.

New option: eight metres of 100mm x 18mm dressed treated pine, four 65mm x 8g screws, router, drop saw, screwdriver and countersink bit, sandpaper & filler, Resene Quick Dry and topcoat, Clear glass silicon sealant and applicator.

Cost: $320, excluding paint.

Upcycled window frame:

Step 1 how to make an an outdoor mirror
Step 1
Remove old putty, fill holes, then sand and undercoat the frame. Apply two coats of topcoat. I used Resene St Tropaz.
Step 2 how to make an an outdoor mirror
Step 2
Using the silicone applicator, apply a bead of silicone to each of the four edges where the mirror glass will sit. Ease the mirror into position and apply gentle pressure to ensure a good bond. Once dry, trim any excess silicone from where the glass meets the front of the frame using a sharp blade. Clean the glass. Attach a hanging fitting to the back.

New wooden frame:


Cutting measurements for treated pine: Sides – Two 2000mm; Top and bottom,two 850mm; Braces, three 735mm.

Step A how to make an an outdoor mirror Step A
Using the router, cut a 5mm deep x 40mm wide strip from the back face of the side and top and bottom pieces.
Step B how to make an an outdoor mirror Step B
Ensuring that the routed strip is to the inside, cut a mitre at each end of the top and bottom pieces so that the outside measures 775mm. Then, again keeping the routed strip to the inside, cut a mitre at each end of the side pieces so that the outside measures 1900mm.
Step C how to make an an outdoor mirror Step C
Drill through each side 40mm down from the top edge. Countersink the holes. Matching the edges, screw into the top and bottom to create the frame.
Step D how to make an an outdoor mirror Step D
Undercoat, then topcoat the whole frame back and front. I used three coats of Resene Non-Skid Deck & Path Paint in Resene Landscape Grey to add some texture. Cut the mirror glass to size – allow for a 5mm gap between the glass and frame. Apply glass silicon sealant and insert the mirror, gently pressing to get a good seal.
Step E how to make an an outdoor mirror Step E
Apply a strip of glass silicon sealant to the back between the glass and edge.
Step F how to make an an outdoor mirror Step F
Undercoat, topcoat and attach three cross braces to the back. If required, attach a suitable hanging device.

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