MIRRORS: VANITY VERSUS ARCHITECTURE by Justin Shaulis

Mirrors are an integral part of decorating all of my projects whether they are residential or hospitality. They can extend views, enlarge spaces and create focal points in a well-designed space. Thus, choosing the right decorative mirror for a design setting is of the utmost importance. 

I believe that no matter the size or shape of a mirror, it can be used for either architecture (form) or vanity (function) and in some instances, both (form and function)!

  Nadia Mirror  in bathroom style by  FoxieOxie.com

Nadia Mirror in bathroom style by FoxieOxie.com

First, I consider my clients when selecting a mirror. What goal are they trying to achieve with their design project? Their design style choices generally fall into one of three major categories: Modern, Transitional, or Traditional. Once that is determined, we move to find that perfect piece that compliments their style.

Next, I use mirrors to enhance the architecture of a space. To accomplish this, I study the decorative elements: size, materials and finish, of mirror frames to determine the influential characteristics that will assist in the design aesthetics of the overall project. There are so many styles and finishes to consider for each design project and finding the right one to compliment the space is vital.

 Close up of  Darius Mirror

Close up of Darius Mirror

 Close up of  Mila Mirror

Close up of Mila Mirror

 Close up of  Memphis Mirror

Close up of Memphis Mirror

For example, while designing a Show House for the Christopher Kennedy compound in Palm Springs, CA, I mounted the Howard Elliott Darius Mirror on textured wallpaper from Fromental. This installation showcased in the European mid-century space in the house was the perfect balance for the glam furniture and vintage accessories I selected. The Darius Mirror’s white lacquered, scooped profile with an accent of gold gilt on the edges along with the shape and size of the mirror further accentuated the romance of this bedroom perfectly complimenting the décor in the room. 

Installations of decorative mirrors for Vanity are just that: for checking your appearance. Most common installations are found in bathrooms and bedrooms, but it is always a great addition to add a Vanity mirror in other places like a foyer or entryway. I like to incorporate Vanity mirrors into unusual places in the home or group them in a salon-style setting with photos and artwork to add an element of surprise. This allows me to focus on the decorative elements of the mirror promoting that “close and personal” feel.

Some mirrors are able to accomplish both objectives of adding architectural elements and at the same time providing for vanity. In the Christopher Kennedy Show House, I was able to place the Howard Elliott Memphis Mirror in the bath suite as a full-length mirror. The effect of the elongated mirror coupled with the textured nickel frame’s finish worked beautifully complimented the architectural elements of the fixtures and tiles AND was the perfect size for “vanity” in this space.

When considering placing mirrors in a room consider their form and function as they don’t have to be just for “vanity” but can be for “architecture” too. 

Check out www.howardelliott.com for an inspiring and broad collection of mirrors of varying sizes, aesthetics and finishes.