Sunburst Modern Mirror

This is a re-post from a project originally posted on another site with some updated photos. 

I made this a few years ago as a Valentine's present for my wife to put in her mid-century modern themed guest bedroom.  That room is painted green and the reflection of the green in the gold leaf paint always made it look a little muddy (see below) so after having the downstairs repainted this week, we moved it into our dining room as a backdrop for her vintage barcart and barware collection.   The much brighter paint really shows off the gold leaf paint. 

It is a shameless copy of a mirror we saw at a department store. It is finished with a gold leaf paint from Sheffield Bronze Paint company. I used shellac as a primer and top coat. I intentionally used a cheap disposable paint brush and applied the shellac and paint in a radial pattern so that the brush strokes would create a subtle sunburst affect. The shellac actually tones down the gold paint a bit and gives it more depth. 
 It measures about 44" square and the mirror cutout is about 25" in diameter. It is made from a single sheet of cheap 1/4" birch plywood plus a few scrap strips of 3/4. I knew I would eventually find a use for the those 1" cutoffs. The mirror is actually a re-tasked unframed rectangular mirror we had on the same wall for the last 15 years. I added a French cleat to make it easier to hang and center over the dresser.

Here is a picture from the MCM green room.  And a few pictures from the build.

--Nathan, TX. Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.


love it nathan.

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

That came out great Lazy. The gold looks like real gold leaf. I love the mid-century modern look. I just built a end table prototype in that genre. 

Nice room. It could be on the set of Mad Men. 😃 
Thanks Pottz.

Both my wife and I are big MCM fans.  One reason that I do not have many indoor woodworking projects is that we find MCM furniture so cheap that we cannot pass it up.  We usually keep things for a while and then swap them out with something new we like even better.  Some of it requires some major refinishing or even repairs but for the most part they are so solidly made, that it is mostly just reversing the abuse from storing it in a garage or something.  The worst case so far was an end table that was chalk painted white.  The bookmatched walnut veneer I found under the paint was stunning.  

--Nathan, TX. Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

Looks great!

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

Looks good, fine piece of work. 


That paint work turned out great. Nice!
The directional brushing is a great touch! I always put a lot of effort to hide it, but looks like it's just another tool in the finishing dept. to use for effect. Nice work!
Bringing back those wonderful and beautifully designed pieces is a noble cause. I remember the incredibly designed pieces when I was a kid that we had in our house, especially in my grandmother’s house.And yes the bookmarked veneers were marvelous and something we may never see again, not to mention the machines they used to make them. 
Nice! It does look better in its new location.

Steven- Random Orbital Nailer

Very nice, and a good location for a mirror over the bar as a backdrop. Well done.

Main Street to the Mountains

That's a really nice piece. The gold finish looks great.

Doing the best I can with what I've got


I love it.  Wife has gone MCM as well (well partly) 


Nicely done, and a lazy finish, to boot!

May you have the day you deserve!

GR8 JOB 😍😎👍


Thanks guys.  It really shines (pun intended) in its new location.  The wife is still happy.   Moving it to its new location means she will see it more often.    

--Nathan, TX. Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

That’s beautiful! Great job on the paint.
Very nice MCM mirror.  

daveg, SW Washington & AZ