Here I show you how to wallpaper furniture by upcycling an old IKEA mirror.
Upcycling with wallpaper is a cheap and affordable way to dramatically transform furniture in your home. It’s a simple way to add a pop of colour and pattern to something plain and make it a lot more interesting.
Wallpaper is great for turning the mundane into something rather more awesome. It’s a cheap and easy way to get that designer look.
Also, wallpaper is easy to change when you feel like something different and it’s wipeable. One of the easiest ways to upcycle furniture is with wallpaper.
The IKEA Mirror Hack
We only have one full-length mirror in the house it’s an old IKEA one and it hangs on the wall at the bottom of the loft stairs in the landing.
The mirror is there so everyone in the house can easily access it. I often find one of the young men in my family preening themselves in front of the mirror.
The second reason the mirror is there is that I won’t have any mirrors in the bedroom. From growing up in Hong Kong, I’m very familiar with the Chinese art of placement, Feng Shui.
Even though Feng Shui is pseudoscience a lot of the rules make sense to me. It’s all about the feel of a room and energy flow, and one of the principles of Feng Shui is not to have any big mirrors in the bedroom.
The IKEA mirror even though very functional and handy, it wouldn’t win any beauty awards. Like most items from IKEA, it is a very plain simple design. Perfect for an IKEA hack. The mirror has a white wide flat frame, which makes the furniture perfect for decoupage.
I have Mod Podged a fabric mirror frame before but this time I wanted to use wallpaper. Wallpaper has an advantage over fabric it is designed to be wiped clean.
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Choosing The Wallpaper
The good and the bad thing about wallpaper is that there are so many different designs and colours to choose from. The choice can be a bit overwhelming.
To wallpaper furniture, you want to choose something with a smaller pattern. If the pattern is too big for the furniture you are going to cover you won’t be able to see it.
I find also busier patterns work well especially if you have any curves to wallpaper. With busy small patterns, it’s easy to hide joins if it’s difficult to match the wallpaper when going around corners.
Wallpaper comes in large rolls several meters long but when wallpapering furniture you tend to only need a couple of meters maximum. It’s worth looking on eBay for part rolls and wallpaper remnants to use, this will make the upcycle a lot more affordable.
However, if you do buy a full roll you can then use the remnants for other upcycles and crafts. For example, where the IKEA mirror hangs in the hallway there is a pendant lampshade. I will also wallpaper that lampshade to match the mirror.
What You Need To Wallpaper Furniture
- Wallpaper – A part roll is normally enough. The wallpaper I used for this IKEA mirror hack was a busy tropical print. It was called Reverie from the Albany Shangra La Range. I choose purple colourway.
- Wallpaper paste – a small packet will be more than enough.
- Ruler, rotary cutter, and mat
- Wallpaper paste brush
How To Wallpaper an IKEA Mirror Frame
This was a large piece of furniture to wallpaper so I did it in the garden where I had plenty of space.
1.. First, thoroughly clean the mirror frame. Then measure the width and length of the frame. I wanted the wallpaper to cover both the front and sides of the frame so I accounted for that in my measurements.
Also, as the back of the frame was not going to be visible, I allowed for some overlap of the wallpaper on the back of the frame.
2. The IKEA mirror frame was a rectangle with curved corners. The best way to cover the frame was to wallpaper it in four sections. Two long sections for the sides and then a top and bottom section.
Think about how you would like the wallpaper pattern to fit on the mirror frame before deciding where to cut the paper. Use a rotary cutter, ruler, and mat to make sure you have a straight cut.
3. Next, mix up the wallpaper paste according to the instructions on the packet. Then to help provide a key brush a layer of paste onto the frame and let it dry.
Then, coat the back of the wallpaper thoroughly with the wallpaper paste and let it soak in for a minute or so before applying it to the frame.
4. Apply the long side strips of wallpaper first to the mirror frame. The great thing about wallpaper you can move it around to position it into place before it dries.
As you lay the wallpaper down use a cloth to smooth it out flat on the front and around the edges. When you get to the top edge snip the wallpaper so that it is easier to fold it over the corner.
5. Next, wallpaper the top and bottom of the frame. Make sure the patterns match as much as possible.
Once the wallpaper has dried the mirror is ready to hang back on the wall. When wallpapering other pieces of furniture the method and principles are pretty much the same as it is for this mirror.
I’ve collected a round-up of other examples of how to wallpaper furniture. Hopefully, you will find one that will inspire you.
This mirror upcycle featured in the A to Z of clever upcycling ideas and resources.
IKEA lamps are also a great product to update, here are 15 of the best IKEA lamp hacks.
For even more wallpaper ideas visit DIYideacenter.