shabby chic mirrored door :: diy

this antique mirrored door has some history.  she weighs about 40 pounds and is so super cool, so i’ve named her bessie.

antique shabby chic mirrored door

bessie was a late night craigslist curb alert find in garden grove.  i’m sure she had a very interesting story before i stumbled upon her, but she’s also had great adventures since she’s come into my life.

long shot of antique mirrored door

first off, she must’ve been sitting outside for a long time before my cool friend Kristen drove her pregnant booty to pick up this and 4 other doors for me one late night in a distant town.

shabby chic antique door wood veneer peeling apart

black, flakey, polka dotted spots under the veneer are probably mold.

i’m no mold expert, but i’m pretty sure this super dark black stuff under the veneer here is mold.  es no bueno, so this door will be used for outdoor decorating for sure.

it was in the 80s last week here in so cal, so i stuck the door outside to let the sun beat on it and try to dry it out as much as possible.

so there it sat in our driveway. i’m sure my neighbors were thrilled about that.

i’m sure the HOA was prepping a letter.  and my super supportive husband didn’t complained once that he couldn’t park in the garage since bessie was blocking his side of the garage.

the truth is, she’s so heavy that i couldn’t move her by myself.  i tried a few times, then got freaked out at the thought of breaking the mirror and enduring 7 years of bad luck.

chippy paint antique door hardware close up

i love these old skeleton keyholes.

then life took over. taekwon-do, swim lessons, school.  you know. life. and so bessie sat out there for the better of a week.

chippy paint antique door hardware

lots of chippy paint going on here already. but i’m pretty sure this is lead-based.

and a few nights ago, i awoke at 3am to what i thought was a tornado.


maybe it had something to do with watching Oz in 3D.  maybe not.

i looked out our window and saw our pepper tree flapping in the wind like the hot air balloon in the movie, the rain was pelting against our window so loudly that it woke me up.  the wind was swirling so hard….and my first thought was ‘ai chihuahua…what about bessie?’

antique mirror in poor condition

the mirror foil is in pretty bad condition, but it wouldn’t be vintage if it were perfect, right?

so i ran to the front window, and all i could see were palm branches and junk swirling in the street.  i was really hoping not to see a 40 pound window smashed up against my neighbors’ house.

i didn’t see bessie.

so i slowly opened the front door, made sure the coast was clear, and ran out to the driveway.

and there she was, quiet as can be.  sitting peacefully with my car pressing it like a sandwich against the garage door.  there was no where bessie could go.

whew 7 more good years.

annie sloan chalk paint stored in baby fod jar

first i pulled up as much of the veneer that was lifting off to give the piece to get a glimpse at the mold situation.  still pretty sure it was mold.

then wearing my goggles and mask, i sanded and vacuumed bessie to remove as much as the lead-based paint as possible.  when lil G came down from his nap, he got a good scare from mommy in her gear.



i painted her with a mix of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Louis Blue with Pure white.   before it was completely dry, i wiped it with a rag to get some of the white to poke through.  then lightly sanded.

a little dark and clear wax mix haphazardly applied and wiped.

close up of shabby chic antique door hardware

now, Kristen and her hubby can enjoy this rustic shabby chic mirrored door in their back yard.

antique shabby chic mirrored door

add a wreath and some flowers in a white Ikea flower pot.

antique shabby chic mirrored doorthe wax will protect it against the sun and rain.  in fact, i’ve had a piece with just a single layer of wax in our backyard with the sun beating on it for almost two years and it’s holding up perfectly.

blue shabby chic mirrored door with wood wreath

i love how the white is poking through on this door.  it gives the piece some depth.

blue shabby chic mirrored door with white flower pot

i chose to paint over some of the hardware, but not all of it.  i’m liking the unpolished and imperfect look for ole bessie.  she’s been through a lot.

white flower pot on blue Annie Sloan Chalk Paint shabby chic door

side view of shabby chic mirrored door Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

tattered mirrored foil and all.

big fat lye soap to clean paint brushesthen to clean up, i use Big Fat Lye from Peinture, my favorite Annie Sloan stockist in Orange County.

Debbie’s gorgeous store makes my knees buckle every time i’m in there.  she herself is gorgeous, super helpful, and gest as excited about your new projects as if they were her own.

Annie Sloan HERSELF will be there for a book signing on April 13, 2013 at 3pm.  Debbie will have advanced copies of Annie’s new book starting this week, so giddyup.

Have a GREAT week!


About meesh

Meesh has a passion for people, creative projects, and technology. She enjoys painting furniture back to life, gardening, playing with her kids, and connecting people.


  1. Kristen Anderson says

    This is AWESOME!! I love that you named her Bessie and I love how she has so much character! I can’t wait to pick her up! I even have the perfect wreath from my wedding that I can hang on her! Thank you so much Meesh!!!