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Design Recipes: 10 tips on using mirrors for design

Cathy Hobbs
Tribune News Service

Mirrors are often considered to be the hidden secret of design. Often just as powerful as artwork and in some cases a more appealing design option, decorating with mirrors for many homeowners may feel overwhelming.

If you are considering using mirrors, here are some useful tips.

1. Consider using mirrors in a series. You don’t just have to use a single mirror on a wall. Consider using two or three in a series — it will help to elongate a space.

2. Try round mirrors instead square or rectangular shapes.

3. Use mirrors above sideboards and entertainment units. They will help to reflect other areas of a space.

4. If you have a room that is small or has no or few windows, consider using one big mirror or a series or mirrors.

5. Try rimless mirrors to create clean lines.

6. Consider placing a mirror above a bed. Typically the choice above a bed is artwork or a mirror.

7. Experiment with finishes. While metallic such as silver and gold are most popular, consider mixing in frames that may be made out of wood or even painted.

8. Experiment with the ornate. Ornate mirrors work in traditional interiors, but can also add a touch of glam into nearly any space.

9. Experiment with thin mirrors. In some cases, bigger may not always be bigger. Slim, thinner mirrors can look really sleek and attractive, especially in modern spaces.

10. Consider using a wall of mirrors as artwork. Artwork doesn’t always have to be traditional art. An elaborate display of mirrors may be just as powerful.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at or visit her website at