The Dale C. Maley Family Web Site

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Stained Glass Hand Mirror

The last time I was at Hobby Lobby getting glass, I saw and bought this neat book with many different patterns.


I always enter my patterns into Sketchup, then I can print as many full-scale patterns as I need.......without destroying the original pattern book.

I scanned the front and back views of the mirror from the book.  I then laid the back view on top of the front make sure they matched...........and they did not!!!!!

After I scratched my head for a while, the book view of the back of the not a front view of the back...........but is back view of the back.   I want to lay out the back, with face towards me so I can select my glass for the best view.  So I changed the view to how I will build it.


I got my glass from the stained glass shop in Decatur, Illinois.

Front side pieces cut


I cut and ground the mirror piece with the shiny side up.  I washed and dried the mirror piece, then applied 2 coats of nail polish sealer.  If you do not seal the edges, some of the fluids will discolor the mirror starting at the edges to green or black (I have been there and done that on my 1st mirror project).

Soldering the front

The picture above is of the back of the front of the mirror. I did not solder the outer edges of the mirror, because I wanted to wrap it in hobby lead, then solder the outside.  I also do not want the solder to stick out too much on the back, because it might hit the back glass panel when they are butted together.

Wrapping outside in hobby lead

On an earlier project of making jewelry boxes, on some of the first ones, I just used copper foil on the edges of the lid. I then added some solder onto the edge of the glass.

I was disappointed how easy it was to brush the soldered copper foil, and bend it on the edges.  I switched to wrapping the lids in hobby lead, and it is a much more robust design.

The book pattern calls for just copper foiled edges around the the front and back mirrors.  I changed the design and wrapped hobby lead around front and back, then soldered the lead together.  I used the drum sander on the drill press to make the outside soldered hobby lead very smooth before applying patina.............and this worked great.

I usually use 7/32" wide black foil on everything.  On this project,  I used wider 1/4" foil on the outside give me more copper foil to solder the hobby lead to.  I learned this technique on a previous project.  It really make a sturdy and nice looking edge.

Front is soldered and done

Pieces cut for back

I cut the rose as one piece..........then cut that piece into individual pieces.  I ground the edges a little, to leave room for the copper foil.............and this worked ok.   Sometimes on previous projects, this did not work ok.

Back if foiled

Back soldered and ready for hobby lead

Soldering front and back together

The surface to be soldered needs to be horizontal.  I used this black plastic square and a rubber band to hold the 2 mirrors in the right orientation for soldering.  This is typical on all 3D projects.

Finished Mirror

Project Statistics

Closing Thoughts on this Project

I really like this color combination..............but other combinations could be used as match other house decors.

My idea of wrapping the outside of the front and back pieces in hobby lead really turned out nice.  The outer edge looks good, is robust, and I could sand it with 220 grit on the drum sander to get it really smooth.

2nd Hand Mirror with no Pink in front

On the 1st mirror, I did not really like the pink color on the front of the mirror.   Pink is fine for the rose on the back of the mirror.

I decided to make a 2nd mirror, and use green instead of pink on the front.

Closing Thoughts on 2nd Mirror

I like the green on the front, much better than the pink!

3rd Mirror with Yellow front

Closing Thoughts on 3rd Mirror

I like the 3rd mirror the best, with the yellow on the front :)

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