What a Difference a Little Shelf Can Make

I was at Marshall’s the other day and spotted a sweet little mirror. I looked at the price tag…$14.99?! Couldn’t believe it. I didn’t have a perfect spot for it, but it was one of those things where I knew it would work SOMEWHERE. And for that price I had to grab it. I’ve been struggling with this one particular wall by my bed lately and thought maybe it could be a contender? Ever since I stole the DIY Paper Sunburst/Bird Cage Thingy that was there and moved it to the family room. You can see it in this pic on the right side of the bed –

and here it is in the family room in this photo –

I’d been trying out different stuff I have around here, trying to find just the thing, but nothing was really floating my boat. I wanted something rounded, or architectural – there’s a window right next to this spot, and when I tried a big square picture frame there, the boxiness of everything wasn’t vibing with me. It needed some softness, like that bird cage and wreath thingy.

So when I spotted this mirror, it was the perfect shape…only a little too small. I knew it wasn’t going to be the right size for that wall, but I thought, maybe I could do a small wall vase on each side, or maybe little candle sconces to flank it. I didn’t know what, but I brought it home and hung it up, hoping inspiration would strike.

I had an idea that a shelf would help. YES! And I can add some tall items to add some height to each end…this could look really cool!

I knew it had to be very thin, so I wouldn’t be bumping into it getting to my side of the bed, so this was definitely going to be a DIY. I went to Home Depot and browsed around, deciding on a 1x6x6 piece of wood (but really it’s 5 and a half inches deep, not 6). It was less than $8. I looked at shelf brackets, and none of them were small enough. I kept walking around though, and found these corner braces in a hardware aisle…I bet they could do the trick! They were galvanized metal, but I could paint them black. Only about $3 a piece so worth a shot!


I went home and measured the space under the mirror – 36 inches would be a perfect length, so I cut the wood in half, then stained it with some Minwax Dark Walnut I had here. (Different kinds of wood absorb differently, so this definitely turned out lighter than dark walnut typically does. But I’m totally cool with that).

Time to paint the braces.

I’ve done this before so I knew it would work – plain ol’ matte black craft paint to the rescue! Went on great!

I measured six inches in from each side for the braces and drilled 1/2 inch wood screws into the wood to secure the braces onto the wood. Then it was just time to hang – I couldn’t wait to see how it looked under the mirror!

I got out my level to make sure it was even, and drilled drywall screws into the wall. One was in a stud, one was not. But I knew this was going to be purely decorative and everything on here would be very light, so I wasn’t concerned about that – if I was, I would’ve used anchors.

A couple little accessories and we’re done!

As for the accessories, I’ve had that plant on the left forever – as well as the books (devotionals are a perfect small size!) and candle.

But the cascading plant is just one stem from Hobby Lobby, and a pot from there, also – both were 50% off, so the whole thing cost $5!? And it was EXACTLY what I had envisioned for this shelf.

I also knew I wanted some taper candles to add some height. These are from Target’s Hearth and Hand line, and I love that they’re adjustable.

I love this little shelf, and now the wall is just right…finally!

Charlie wanted in on the photo shoot. That head tilt kills me every time. 😉

So to recap:

-mirror – $15

-shelf materials for half a piece of wood and two braces – $10

Custom wall decor for $25 (plus a couple new accessories) AND solves a longtime decorating dilemma?

I’ll take it! 🙂


  1. Wow! You are so talented AND thrifty!!!

  2. A perfect replacement for your birdcage! Love it! Plus the mirror adds light/reflection.

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