Friday, 26 February 2016 00:39

Through The Looking Glass

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Through The Looking Glass Through The Looking Glass
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While a mirror in the bathroom is a must-have, this humble home essential also holds great potential as a decorative accessory. Lara Bailey discovers the aesthetic benefits of a well-placed mirror.

With their ability to reflect light, create symmetry, enhance a sense of grandeur and develop a theme, mirrors are the ultimate home de?cor item. A thoughtfully-selected and properly-placed mirror will create a sense of spaciousness, warmth and elegance, so they’re perfect for nearly every room of the house.
Here, Queensland Home Design + Living speaks with Christine Maclean, Interior Design National Manager for furnishing company Laura Ashley, about the many and varied benefits of incorporating mirrors into an interior decorating scheme.


The mirror’s usefulness around the home might begin with assisting to get hair and makeup spot- on, but that’s really just scratching the surface of the mirror’s worth, explains Maclean.

“Beyond the practical function, a mirror can serve a variety of purposes,” she says.

“[When] strategically positioned, a mirror can become the focal point of a setting, [and] subject to the size and style, a mirror has the ability to make a design statement or enhance an existing one.”

When positioned centrally above cabinetry or a fireplace, Maclean explains, a mirror can “provide symmetry and balance”, while its reflective qualities mean it can “visually lighten the space” when placed in a narrow area, such as a small room or at the end of a long hallway.

“A well-placed, well-selected mirror has the ability to open up a space, to create new views or vignettes and to inject personality into a setting.

“The larger the mirror, the greater the sense of space,” she says.


Creating beauty and symmetry in a room isn’t as simple as selecting any mirror and hanging it on a wall – it’s important to choose mirrors in shapes and sizes that will enrich your space, says Maclean. It therefore pays to be mindful of which area you’re buying for, and what style best defines your current interior look.

“Keep true to the style of the existing de?cor [by] selecting a style [of mirror] that echoes or builds on the theme. In a contemporary space, go simple and bold and choose either a frameless style or one where the frame is equally simple and bold. In a traditional or ornate setting, select a style that is decorative and finely detailed and where the frame itself is a work of art.

“Where possible, in a small or dark space go large to maximise the area of mirrored glass and keep the styling simple and streamlined. Positioning a mirror behind or in a direct line with a light source such as a chandelier, lantern or window will increase the general level of lighting in the room.

“In a dressing room or bedroom, choose a mirror that is floor-standing for added drama and practicality. If space is an issue, position a well- proportioned mirror above a cabinet or chest of drawers. Consider a triple mirror for placing directly onto the top of a chest of drawers to create the semblance of a dressing table.

“Entrance foyers or hallways can similarly be enhanced by placing a mirror above a console table, providing the perfect backdrop for a floral display or [your] treasured pieces.”


While the right mirror can invite light and create the illusion of space, the wrong one can be ineffective at best or diminish a room's overall aesthetic impact at worst.

“Selecting a suitable mirror will create strength and harmony [in a setting], however selecting an incongruous style will detract from the overall finished effect. The result will be confused and the message unclear,” says Maclean.

“Placement is also of critical importance. Positioning a mirror at the end of a narrow hallway will enhance the space, for instance, while positioning one along the length will not achieve the desired result unless it runs the full floor-to- ceiling length.”

Safety and practicality should also be considered when positioning mirrors.

“Heavy and floor-standing mirrors require additional tethers to walls as a safety measure,” says Maclean.

“[Also consider] proximity to doors – the movement of doors opening and shutting can cause a mirror to move off-square, requiring constant repositioning.”

To break down the process of selecting the right mirror and make it a simpler task, here Maclean explains Laura Ashley’s comprehensive guide to the advantages of decorating with mirrors.


Read 66728 times Last modified on Friday, 26 February 2016 01:13