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DIY Zinc Mirror

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I finally found the perfect mirror to give a zinc finish.  I knew in my head what I was looking for and that is not always a good thing because nothing but what I imagine will make me happy.  The elusive mirror was found in my all-time favorite honey-hole of a thrift store for $10.00.  Here is what the beauty looked like when I brought it home:

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If you ignore the painted flowers and the wood, doesn’t it have the same shape as the zinc mirrors from the fancy online stores I have been eyeing?

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zinc mirror

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Just in case you are wondering, the cheapest mirror I could find was over $500.00  I bought my mirror ($10.00) and enough supplies to do the mirror and several more projects for $10.00 more.

I am telling you folks, getting the zinc look is not as hard as you might think.  After sanding off the flower design, my first step was to do a Google search of zinc mirrors and looked at them all very carefully before I dove in.  What I think I like most about a zinc finish is the irregularity that each zinc piece has.

alhambra antiques Original Zinc and Wood Oeil du Boeuf Parisian Window Mirror french decorating ideas

Bjd Haus Design

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Eron Johnson Antiques

I love the mix of dark and light, the shine on the worn edges and the aged appearance.

The secret to the process is getting the right products and not being afraid to experiment.  Go buy yourself a cheap mirror at Goodwill and dive in.  If you hate it, paint it another color.

I used Rust-oleum Soft Iron metallic spray paint

soft iron

Cheap acrylic paint that is less than a dollar a bottle.  One of them was called zinc.  The other is a lighter gray.

craft smart silver metallic paint

Finally, I glaze it all with a silver glaze.

Spray the entire item with the spray paint.  Once it is dry brush on random places of the acrylic paint.  Make sure to use a really dry brush.  I dipped it in the paint then wiped the brush off on a paper towel.

Once you are happy with the acrylic paint, repeat with the silver.  I focused on the outer edges.

Ta Dah.

faux zinc mirror zinc detail

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My rescue, Lumi, cannot stay away when I am taking photos.  I decided not to fight her tonight.  She is a sweetie.

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Easy Zinc Finish on Wood Furniture

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Type in “Zinc Finish” into Google Images and you get this set of images:

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I really like the aged metallic look that appears it has been around the block a time or two.

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Source

I like the patina colored zinc the best.

I have been looking longingly at Restoration Hardware zinc finishes. I would love to have a giant mirror like this one if it were still available and did not weigh 80 lbs:

zinc mirror

Source

 

Alas, it was not meant to be.

I started looking for options to get the look I like at a price that I could afford.  You can read about that here Getting a Zinc Finish

I read, and read, and read some more.  Then decided that there had to be an easier way.  For once, I was right.  There is a much simpler way to get the look.

This is what I used:

soft iron

and Color Smart ( Michael’s) silver metallic paint mixed with glaze.  ( I used some Behr Faux Effects Glaze I had on hand.)

craft smart silver metallic paint

I had a part of a door that we turned into a coat rack hanging out.  It was hanging out because I never really liked the finish.  It was a perfect piece to practice the process on.

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The steps were simple:

First spray paint the entire piece with the metallic paint.

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Next, paint on the glaze then rub it in.  Follow the individual boards with the direction to rub in/off the glaze.

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Spray the whole thing with a flat or satin sealer when you have the look you are going for.  Tah Dah.  Done.

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This shelf is going to be a place to hang towels in the new and improved bathroom.  Photos soon to come, I hope!

This project was super easy.  Even easier than I anticipated.

 

I used the same process on a small table and I wish I had painted the whole thing first with primer to eliminate the look of the wood grain.   I still like the table as it is, but it does not have the “made of metal” look

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I will be taking what I have learned and looking for a mirror to do in the near future. It would be super easy to do this finish on some of those cardboard letters that are in every craft shop.  They would look like expensive metal letters.   I think there is a beautiful metallic mirror in my future.

Getting a Zinc Finish on Wood

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One of the metallic finishes I am interested in learning to replicate is Zinc. I came very close to painting he mirrors for the bathroom with a zinc look…but I chickened out. I like the old weathered dullish metal that looks like it has been around a while and has a story to tell but it is expensive. If you follow me on Facebook you know that this was big discussion, with strong opinions. My friends really care about my bathroom mirrors apparently. 🙂

Restoration Hardware has some beautiful tables, mirrors, and dressers in zinc. I am crushing on them and would buy one, if only I weren’t such a cheapskate.

This particular side table is $420.00

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Restoration Hardware Zinc Table
So I did what any good Pinterest follower would do, I started searching for Zinc DIY.
Here are a few results from my search:

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Source:  Lovely Crafty Home

 

I love it when someone does all the work for me!

 

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My favorite look was this from Freckled Laundry

 

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Source:  Freckled Laundry  Warning.  The videos are informative, but there are a lot of short videos and you have to watch a 30 second video for each.

While we do not have the same taste or style, the idea to use spray paint was something I wanted to try.

 

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Source Segreto Secrets
Even this fancy room got a zinc topped breakfast table using two colors of Krylon spray paint.  I have found some Rustoleum paint I plan on trying.  I am also whipping out the Rub N Buff.

I decided to start with a straight forward oak table given to me recently. It is a simple shape that will translate well with the zinc finish.  Oh, and it was FREE!  I love free.

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My plan of attack is simple:

Sand, prime, hammer in some nails around the edges, paint rub, glaze, rub some more and pray it all turns out.

If I like it I am moving on to a mirror as promised.

Wish me luck, I am going in!

Blessings,

Karen