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kevinmp_gw

Part II: Now help me with this mirror!

11 years ago

So I've replaced the table, which by most accounts was a success. But the old mirror (the black Greek key/Asian looking one below) needs to go. I'm having a hell of a time finding a replacement. I finally found one today that fits my criteria of being large to fill most of the void above the mantel and still be acceptable for the period of the house (c. 1826 (it will never match what would have actually been in here since this is where the poorer families originally lived)) or at least a timeless sort of design. I am thinking dark wood or a brassy or gold toned frame, and about 36-40" W x 44-50" H.

Here's what I bought today. It was $100 (which is a good price for what it is and was only that price because it was at Homegoods). But it isn't what I thought it'd be. It seems like it's smaller than I thought it'd be and a little more in-your-face color-wise than I thought it'd be. I gave in on the ornateness and could deal with that. What do you think? And if you have any other recommendations, please let me know! I'll post a separate thread on the chair issues (the side chairs in this photo are going).

Thanks everyone.

The old mirror (with the new table):

{{gwi:1540110}}

The new mirror (with the new table):

{{!gwi}}

Comments (71)

  • 11 years ago

    I like the original mirror. It keeps things interesting!

  • 11 years ago

    Kevin,
    I like your original mirror best...makes the table & drapes the stars...that's just me & it's your beautiful home & you have great taste. Why are you changing the curtain rod? I also like the hanging coats...cozy & functional...again, that's just me.

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  • 11 years ago

    Yes, unfortunately that is my only entryway. It looks clutter free during the week, but it gets a little out of control in the winter months on weekends. I wasn't trying to do a photo shoot, otherwise I would have cleaned it up more.

    There's no closet on the first floor (as is the case with all of these houses), and there's really not room for a coat tree, which is why I installed the coat rack. As Palimpsest has said, you have to deal with what you have in these houses and there are some odd things that you wouldn't want or do in suburban houses. So imagine it empty or at least like the picture below, which is how it usually looks during the week. And I know the mirror is too ornate, and I'm trying to avoid that. I also know the curtains need to be changed out once the rest of the colors are set in stone, and I will deal with that. I know it's hard to focus on just the mirror without looking at the curtains, etc., but let's try to stick to the mirror on this thread! The curtains will be a whole other thread some day.

    {{gwi:1540094}}

  • 11 years ago

    I like many of the suggestions; in fact, I would have been the first one to respond to your question, last night! But I was too tired to articulate my thoughts, which were 1. similar to snookums's, although I'd been thinking of a dark brown and gold mirror, or 2. have a frame made at a frame shop and have the framer put mirror glass in it.

    I really like some of the black and gold ones snookums has shown. I hadn't even thought about black vs. a dark brown. But I also like the idea of a brown glaze. Now that I'm looking at your images again, I am somewhat more in the brown camp. That's because I like the idea of seeing colors flow throughout a room vs. one or two "pops" of color here & there. With brown in a mirror, you'd have the door, floor, table, new curtain rod, then the mirror,and the eye would flow naturally from door to mirror or from mirror to door. OTOH, because of your dark wall color, black and gold would look good, too, I think.

    So, too, would all gold, but I think it should be an antiqued gold (or unlacquered brass that is allowed to age somewhat).

    The Stenella one you showed is too plain for my taste. But then, it's not my room. :) What I really like about it however is its shape - it would mirror the shape of the table and ceiling fixture....mirror the shape, get it. ;) Plus, almost everything in your DR is a rectangle or square.

  • 11 years ago

    I would wait on the mirror until you get the chairs you want, the chairs may be simpler or more ornate and then you can choose the mirror depending on which direction you should go, simpler or more ornate. I do like the black and gold better that snookums posted. I like the more toned down look of the finish of your original mirror.
    A coat tree might give a better look in that area.

  • 11 years ago

    Wait, pork and lizzie, are you saying you think the black and gold mirror should stay or the new gold one? (I've settled on getting rid of that because it's always been a bit over the top. I used to have a sisal rug with a black border, and it was fine with that, but it's been too much ever since that outstayed its welcome. By the way, I don't recommend sisal for heavily trafficked areas, especially dining rooms that also serve as where you enter from the street, rain, snow, etc.)

    Believe it or not the new gold one is antiqued already. I think it's because the wall color is so dark that the contrast is so stark. I'm off today, so I'm going to poke around some in NJ and see if I can find something better across the river.

  • 11 years ago

    Don't forget to look on craigslist.

  • 11 years ago

    Sorry I wasn't clear! I like the Greek key/Asian mirror, but I tend to prefer rooms that are mostly traditional with eclectic touches - that collected over time look.

  • 11 years ago

    http://philadelphia.craigslist.org/fuo/3491774721.html
    Do you like this one better? It might be a bit large.

  • 11 years ago

    If you darken the frame, give it some "age", that mirror will work. But have fun looking today for the perfect one.

  • 11 years ago

    darker mirror? .....

    Here is a link that might be useful: bellacor.com -- mirror

  • 11 years ago

    another mirror?

    Here is a link that might be useful: bellacor.com -- mirror

  • 11 years ago

    ... a different shape ....

    Here is a link that might be useful: lamps plus -- arched mirror

  • 11 years ago

    Just knock down that shiny gold with some brown glaze. You are overthinking this. Right back at you, Kitchen Detective. Good to see you. Been missing everybody here. I am about to repaint and colors are looking dated.

  • 11 years ago

    Just wanted to tell you that your home is gorgeous. Plus, you're a hoot! I thought I saw a Romney sticker in your kitchen drawer.

    A fellow Republican

  • 11 years ago

    How about this chandelier? Just a thought! :)

    Here is a link that might be useful: Lamps Plus -- a chandelier that strikes me as quite Regency

  • 11 years ago

    I know you didn't ask, but I hope you intend to raise the curtain rods. If you plan to go with a solid color curtain, I think you can keep your current mirror as it won't compete wth them. Beautiful home!

  • 11 years ago

    I will be raising them to the space between the window and crown, yes.

  • 11 years ago

    I agree about using a glaze to de-gold the mirror. Also my3dogs (who has been MIA lately) is an expert on finding good deals on mirrors and changing them up - I think she uses Rub-n-Buff quite successfully. Maybe she will see this and give you some ideas also.

    And by the way, your jackets hanging by the door and your boots sitting at the base of the stairs are some of the things I like best about your beautiful home - shows that someone lives there. Plus your cats! And I do believe I saw a dog recently in one of your pics.

    You do good work.

  • 11 years ago

    Kevin, I like the chairs you have in place. If you are going to redo chairs, I would buy 2 more of the identical slipper chairs and use alongside the table and use the slat backs or wingbacks as captain and queen chairs at either end. Ornate work in chairs can get looking cluttery. I know, I have that look. I love the wall color, love the drapes although they need raising and I love the new mirror you have but it needs a glaze, love cats and dog, but still need to move the coatrack elsewhere. It is fine, we all have 'em but if your dining room is to become a somewhat formal affair, I think it needs to be moved. For me, I can eat with cats around and dogs but I think the dining room is not a cloak room. I am sorry that bothered some but it did me.
    About Rub-n-Buff, that is what one uses to make metallic colors. Go to Hobby lobby and find a glaze. They will have pictures of the end product. Just tell anyone who works there what you want, and they can help you.

  • 11 years ago

    I think that with both mirrors, you have a small problem with scale. The size is really good, and the vertical shape, and the leaning rather than hanging I also like, because it works with your more modern take on the very traditional elements in your house.

    But the frames on both those mirrors are, in my view, disproportionately heavy. They both overshadow the proportions of your mantelpiece, which is quite pretty. And I think that most of the recommended alternatives in the thread have the same problem. I don't like the oval for your room, because it's a shape that is more commonly seen in Victorian houses, and you are clearly headed in a Federal direction.

    So I would look for something in the same overall size, but with less of the acreage dedicated to the frame. And I'd also see about something that is a combination of gold and silver leaf.

    Most of the large mirrors in my house I've had made at the frame shop. You can get really beautiful moldings and mirrors for less than you'd pay for something of equal quality ready-made. And I think you should spring for good quality, rather than inexpensive approximations of beautiful ornate antique mirrors.

    Here are a couple of mine...I think your room could handle frames a little heavier than these, and yours wouldn't be as big, but just as examples of what I mean:

    This one is a combination of gold and silver leaf. It was made to hang over a chest in another room in our other house, and now ... well, as you see. I think it cost about $500 to have made.

    Here's a detail of the molding:

    This one lives in the dining room, but I had it made to hang over the library table in our previous house. It's a hand painted Italian frame, and I think I spent a rather extravagant $700 to have this mirror made, but there are similar things for less.

    This is the detail:

  • 11 years ago

    yes, what brons said! Did not see that was what bothered me until i saw the differnce her simple one would make. if it were me, I would not go new, but take the time to find the right older one, antique or vintage.
    i have loved warching your decor in action...beautiful! As for the coats: does not bother me a bit. Goes with the old house...adds charecter, and therefore charm. I cannot tell if the coat rack is deserving of it's place. If not, go scout out another. In summer, hang an antique walking cane and umbrella....color coordinated, of course. A nice leash would be lovely....don't you want a dog? :> )

  • 11 years ago

    I have a dog: a cavalier and a ragdoll that acts like a dog!

  • 11 years ago

    Ok....maybe it's already been asked but why are you changing the room? Just time for a change?

    From the first time I saw pics of your home I could not find anything wrong with any of your rooms. You have such a good eye for design and apparently have made such excellent choices in the past that I'm surprised you're getting so confused in your selections now.

    Personally, I wouldn't have changed anything in the LR but I understand you needing more seating area. The original table was a perfect shape since it allowed more traffic flow in the room, but you definitely needed one with a leaf. Now that you've changed the style of the table, it appears you'll soon be replacing everything in the room. So sad since I thought it was already perfect. And that mirror! I'd never get rid of it......so unique.
    Not wanting to sound rude, but it's beginning to sound as tho there are too many chefs in the kitchen. ;)

  • 11 years ago

    What the frame guy just around the corner recommended. But he liked the scale of yesterday's mirror. Nice to take a thirty second walk to be able to look at frames. It'll be very costly though.

    {{!gwi}}

  • 11 years ago

    I'm changing the room because after hosting the last supper club and Thanksgiving, I gave up on the table. This table takes up no more space really because the chairs don't stick out as much. And it's actually better for traffic because of the rounded edges. Plus it'll allow me to seat 8, which happens sometimes. As nice as it may have looked, the other table was junk really. And paint always chips and looks terrible.

    The mirror just has to go. I can repurpose it somewhere.

    And I like all if the chefs and infighting. That's what supposed to happen.

  • 11 years ago

    Could you paint the new gold mirror from Homegoods an antique or brushed silver look? Say, first paint it red, then black, then silver leaf it or paint it silver, and slightly sand off the sliver to reveal a bit of what is below. Just an idea.

  • 11 years ago

    All ragdolls are more dog than cat. They just look like cats, but they are very social like dogs, and never whine like this spoiled rotten, lovable and adorable blue Persian here by my side, insisting I get off the computer and acknowledge his royal presence. I loved my ragdoll.

  • 11 years ago

    Since you have a pewter-ish light fixture and sounds like you have brass window hardware on the way, I'd like to see a mirror frame that has both finishes represented. I tend to be a little OCD about mixing and matching metals in a room, though. To me, the Home Goods mirror is too glaringly brass colored to work well with your light fixture. I also think I agree with Bronwynsmom that simpler may be better. Both your current mirror and the new/proposed one are stealing attention from your pretty fireplace.

    The mirror in the link below is obviously not the right one but just an example of one that has two metal finishes.

    BTW, great house.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Mixed metal mirror

  • 11 years ago

    My vote is still for the mahogany one from craigslist : ) I think it would tie in with the table and the new curtain rod.

  • 11 years ago

    Kevin...Yes, I was saying I like the original Greek key mirror! Sorry for the confusion.

    We also have a ragdoll cat, and yes, she does act like a dog. Such a little sweetie & a great companion. She is a funny cat full of quirks. Likes us to brush her teeth, and wants to be brushed a trillion times/day. Has recently become more cuddly, climbing up on my husband's lap & snuggling in higher next to him in bed, rather than perched at the end of the bed. She's almost 6 now. She gives me ear licks, but only on one ear & no one else gets those!!

  • 11 years ago

    I have no suggestions, but can I please have your old drapes and mirror ;)

    Your home is beautiful. Add me in as another who prefers eclectic. All of the changes are steering toward a more formal look, which will be lovely, but I hope you retain at least a small bit of whimsy in your beautiful room.

  • 11 years ago

    Not sure why you don't like the Greek mirror in the room. It is unexpected, looks expensive, and I love it in the room.

  • 11 years ago

    Here's what the mirror looks like up close, which is why I thought it'd be okay--it's sort of already distressed and has both black and red underneath, which is appropriate. I didn't find anything today that I liked. I'll look at Stenella tomorrow when I'm there getting my chairs.

    {{!gwi}}

  • 11 years ago

    After browsing back through the photos and comments (while watching the BCS game, Roll Tide), I'll vote for at least temporarily keeping the mirror (and draperies) you have and waiting until you replace or reupholster your chairs. You have been shown some really lovely mirrors that would work nicely, but I do like the existing mirror just as well, at least for now. I think you'd be in a better position to make a good choice once you have lived with your new chairs, and maybe even new draperies before spending more $$ on a new mirror. That would probably be the last major piece I'd replace.

  • 11 years ago

    I think, somehow these look too new. If you were staying with the contemporary Greek key, that would be okay but now that you are skewing traditional, I think it's not only the brightness of the leafing that is too much, but the thickness of the frame. It's wider than your millwork. But there are a number of almost intangible things that make most of these choices just seem "new".

    With the Greek Key it is both open, and a color that blends into the wall so the effect is textural, and its width is not so --dominant, I guess.

    Do you need to get this mirror now? The reason I ask is because antique mirrors are not any more expensive than some of these options and they would tend to be more fitting, and probably more interesting.

    I got a vernacular Chippendale-style mirror c. 1790 at Freeman's a couple years back. It's not big, it has the original finish and extremely foxed glass, and it has some of the craziest Chippendale chicken feet on the bottom corners --so it's very high impact for it's small size. They regularly have mirrors and such in their American and Pennsylvania Auction. Of course, now they won't because I said that.

  • 11 years ago

    I'm definitely not keeping this one (at least not as it is). I agree the frame's too bulky and the color is obnoxious. Thanks everyone!

  • 11 years ago

    I like the original mirror that you have currently in the room. I like the interesting pattern on it that accents the stripes in the curtains. I actually thought it was the new mirror. The new mirror does nothing for the room.

  • 11 years ago

    I vote to keep the old mirror but simplify the curtains so they backdrop the chairs. The mirror and the curtains are too much with the new chairs and I think the curtains really detract from the chairs. Checks don't work anymore, imo. Your other rug had square patterns going on and you had the simplicity of the black and white furniture. Plus, this is a tight space. There's no breathing room between the patterns and details.

    This post was edited by snookums2 on Mon, Jan 7, 13 at 23:34

  • 11 years ago

    I also already have this Drexel mirror upstairs in my bedroom (which has a mahogany Stickley dresser in the same finish as the new table). I could put that don't there in the dining room. It's not really style appropriate but I thought I'd throw it out there.

    {{!gwi}}

  • 11 years ago

    I really, really like your original mirror...as others have said, it's unexpected (and beautiful) with what else is in the room. I like it even better with your new table. I also think it lends itself well to being propped, not many will, they would look too contrived.

    I don't care for any of the other choices here shown so far, for your beautiful room.

    And, your home is so charming!

  • 11 years ago

    I like the new gold mirror better now that I've seen it close up. I agree with you that I don't think the mahogany mirror you have would look good but if you try it I would love to see a picture. I do think a mahogany mirror would look nice it's just finding the right one. But then it may make the room to "matchy matchy"

  • 11 years ago

    I don't understand why the checks do not work with the herringbone fabric. Herringbone is a subtle solid. I like the curtains you have, I like the gold mirror and I love the Greek mirror. I like your new chairs. I think it is a matter of putting it all together and seeing it in the space. Just need to remove the coat rack as it will be a catch-all for various fabrics and will detract from your otherwise glamorous room. It is fine for a room to look lived-in but with the right lived-in items. The sweet biskit cat gives it that perfect look. I think the ease of herringbone, the casual man look and the backdrop of beautiful chairs and an elegant rug are very pretty but where are my3dogs and alison to weigh in on this?

  • 11 years ago

    How about a simple antiqued one with iron frame (it's on sale too)? Or would 48" be too tall?

    Here is a link that might be useful: Antiqued Mirror w/ Simple Iron Frame

  • 11 years ago

    I agree that the mirror should probably be the last element. Just another idea for color/shape:

    {{!gwi}}

  • 11 years ago

    I''d lose the curtains and evaluate the room with them removed. I think they detract from the new elements you're introducing into the room. Let's see a photo then.

  • 11 years ago

    I thought your old decor was gorgeous, but I can understand the need to shake things up once in a while. Your beautiful new oval table will be the star of the room. I agree with those who've suggested an oval or round mirror, to soften the angles in the mantel, shelves, even the striped curtains. A bit of gold, but not so much and not so bright. I'd go ahead and try your curvy framed mirror, unless you love it now right where it is. Return the Homegoods mirror. The Greek Key mirror is beautiful for now, and soon the perfect mirror will fall into your lap, if you have patience.

  • 11 years ago

    What is the width of the mantle? Height from top of mantle to ceiling? Also, is the ground of the rug black or navy?

  • 11 years ago

    I've consolidated this with the chair thread at http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/decor/msg0121195224418.html?1

  • 11 years ago

    That mirror in the very first picture made my heart skip a beat. Beautiful!