Friday Furnishings: Smoke and Mirrors, Plus The Goodwill Challenge Part 2.7
Maybe it’s because I live in such a diminutive apartment that I love mirrors. They’re said to make small spaced look larger, and I’d like to think that’s the case. Mirrors can possess a nearly magical power, when you stop to think about it, especially when used to harness images in an unexpected way, such as in the case of the Sky Mirror, at right.
At nearly 18 feet in diameter, this mirror weighs 10 tons and sits outside the Nottingham Playhouse in Nottingham, England. Anish Kapoor created the piece, which took nearly six years to come to fruition. It’s reflective on both sides and – like a spoon – turns the image upside down on the concave side and right side up on the convex side. I’m simply fascinated!
Most of us will never see the Sky Mirror, let alone have any use for a mirror that’s bigger than perhaps the back of our closet door. Sure, everybody needs that cheap version from the hardware store to check out your ensemble in all its full-length glory. That doesn’t mean, though, that you can’t incorporate mirrors as a design element elsewhere in your dwelling. Say, for example that you don’t want your mirrors to cover up too much of the walls. The “Fiction” series, at left, from Glas Italia might just be perfect.
The mirrors attach to the wall with a single chromium-plated cylinder and have this cool feature where the degraded silvering on the back allows what’s behind to show through. On the small version, the degrading can go up or down. This slightly creepy, but oh-so-intriguing design is sure to get everybody doing a double-take. Now I don’t know the price on these because it’s a case of “if you have to ask…” Suffice to say they cost less than the Kapoor commission. But that’s not saying much!
Back in regular-people world, the DCGF likes to use mirrors in unexpected ways, like with mirrored furniture. For those of you with sticky-fingered toddlers or super-slurpy puppies, such pieces might not be the best suggestions, but for others, mirrored furniture can fit nicely into a variety of decors, from shabby chic to ultramodern.
The Mirrored Side Table at right is available from Target for $100. Trust me: that’s a great price for mirrored furniture. I have a shorter version of this one and I love it. It looks great with a brushed pewter lamp and black laquered box that I’ve placed on top, along with a vintage orange clamshell ashtray (for decorative purposes only, of course). This would look equally sharp with a vase of dried flowers on top of a lacy doily, or piled with leather-bound books and mahogony bookends. The possibilities are really endless because the mirrors truly reflect whatever’s around them.
If an entire table is too much, but you still want to incorporate mirrors into your furniture, then try taking a mirrored tray that is approximately the same size as the top of a current table in your place and placing it on top as a permanent part of the table. You’ll still get the mirrored effect without having to spend much time or money.
Sometimes mirrors can just be pure fun, with no function whatsoever. The Mod Mirror at left is in the spirit of Andy Warhol’s infamous portraits and – at just 12″ by 12″ – would fit nicely on a wall or ledge. Here’s the catch, though: it costs $200. I said mirrors are expensive!
The DCGF, of course, saw this as an opportunity to take up another Goodwill Challenge. So I thought, it can’t be that hard to create a cool-looking mirror/piece of art to hang on the wall, right? Actually…it’s not.
Here’s what you need: 5″ by 7″ mirror “the kind that you put inside your locker in high school: 3 1/2″ by 5″ mailing labels (the ones that have adhesive on the back); and a hi-res image that you like.
Print out the image on the labels, cut out the parts you where you want the mirror to show through and voila! You get something like my Warhol Soup Can Mirror, at right. And it looks even better in person. Everybody keeps saying, “You made that?!” Yep.
I know, it’s a little off center; I’ll fix that next time. And yeah, it ends up with a lot of fingerprints from applying the labels; I’ll clean that up later. But it looks pretty sweet hanging off the front of the metal cabinet in my cubicle. Take that expensive, really-awesome-looking mirrors! Ha.
Any purchase made at a Goodwill Retail Store or on ebay.com funds Goodwill’s mission of training and employment programs for people with disadvantages or disabilities. Copyright Goodwill of Greater Washington, DC Goodwill Fashion Blog. All Rights Reserved.