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How to Build a DIY Frame to Hang over a Bathroom Mirror

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We had a basic builder-grade mirror in our basement bathroom that was incredibly boring and ugly. But, because it was functional and not in our master bathroom, we left it ‘as is’ for 8+ years. 

Check out my tutorial to frame a bathroom mirror without the use of mirror adhesive! A DIY mirror frame can make a big difference in a bathroom makeover for very little cost.

DIY wood frame over bathroom mirror in Nimbus gray colored bathroom.

Get more diy home decor tips and ideas here.

Tutorial to Frame a Simple Bathroom Mirror:

Jason, my husband, doesn’t get too worked up about decor in our home.

But, for whatever reason, he had always despised our basement bathroom mirror. The mirror clips used to hang it were small sea shells and were hung in studs.

This of course meant that the little clips were unevenly placed on the mirror and just looked weird. While it is not a huge mirror, putting the clips in the studs was the right choice.

It just didn’t look good.

Take a look at the unbalanced mirror clips for yourself:

Mirror clips were used to install the builder's grade bathroom mirror

Don’t judge the dirty mirror!

And an up-close of the shell mirror clip:

Up close of shell mirror clips prior to framing mirror.

When I was getting lumber at a hardware store for our rustic shelves, I grabbed a board for this project too! In that same post, I share how I stained the wood. 

If you are interested in learning in how to stain wood click here.

Materials Needed:

  • Lumber cut to fit mirror (see below for details to get accurate measurements)
  • Wood stain of choice – I used Minwax Special Walnut
  • Optional: alternatively you could paint the frame vs. stain if this is your preference
  • Wood glue or liquid nails
  • Mending Plates to secure boards together
  • Chalk paint or spray paint to paint mending plates if desired (I used black chalk paint because I had it on hand)
  • drop clothes
  • paper towels or rag to wipe excess wood glue as needed
  • D-ring hangers
  • drywall anchors (if unable to hang frame in studs)
  • screw driver

How to Measure for the Bathroom Mirror Frame:

These instructions are for straight cuts without the use of a miter saw / miter box. I wanted to avoid needing to have wood cut at 45-degree angle since I was going to get the cuts done at Lowe’s. This makes for an easy project that anyone can do!

Our mirror was 30 inches x 36 inches. I knew I could have someone at Lowe’s or Home Depot cut a board down to the lengths I needed, but they will only do a straight cut. 

So I determined four 34″ cuts (length) would work great for our space.

The goal was to cover the beveled edges of the mirror as well as the mirror clips.

My board was 2.5 inches wide and 34 inches long.

This would give us 34″ across by 39″ tall when assembled. See below.

Measure for bathroom mirror frame.

So to recap, the frame pieces were all the same length for my particular mirror (34 inches).

When fully assembled, the right side and left side would have the top and bottom boards attached to them, making the frame 34″ X 39″.

Clear as mud? Keep reading!

When measuring your space, take into account the builder grade mirror size you are covering. But also consider the space above the sink as well as the space below the lights.

You will want to ensure the bottom pieces have enough space above the sink and the top board covers the top of the mirror but isn’t too close to the light fixture.

It’s easier than it sounds, really!

How to Make a Frame to Cover Your Simple Bathroom Mirror

Now on to how to actually make the frame.

1. Measure for Board (see above) and Purchase Board

As I mentioned above, if you do not have the tools to cut your board at home, you can have someone at Lowe’s, Home Depot, Menards (or any other home improvement store such as those) assist you.

They do not charge above the cost of the lumber for making straight cuts on a piece of wood.

The first step is to make sure you know exact measurements of what you need. Getting the proper measurements is the first thing you should do!

The next step is getting the pieces of wood, cut to the exact size you need based on your measurements.

RELATED: How to Make Wood Bead Garland

2. Stain or Paint Boards

I used Minwax Special Walnut stain for my boards. 

This tied in perfectly with the cabinetry in our basement bathroom. You can select ANY stain that fits your decor. If you’d rather use a color, painting is always an option!

If you’d like instructions on how I stained my frame, see this post for instructions.

The stain was allowed to dry for several hours prior to assembling the frame boards.

3. Put the Frame Together with Wood Glue

Ensure your boards are on a flat surface for this part of the project.

We simply covered our ping-pong table with a little bit of old newspaper so it would be out of the way when drying.

Placing stained boards on newspapers in preparation for using wood glue to make frame.

I used wood glue to hold the frame together.

Wood glue was used to hold boards together for frame around bathroom mirror.

Apply a liberal amount of wood glue on the surfaces then press together firmly, wiping away any excess glue.

This is important as the boards will be stuck to whatever they are on top of if you do not clean around the outer edge well.

It’s not like I know this from experience or anything! 😉

Applying wood glue to both surfaces of board when making frame.

4. Secure the Boards with Mending Plates

I’m pretty sure I paid less than a dollar for the mending plates at WalMart. Here is a link to some mending plates on Amazon that are close to the ones I used.

But if it were me, I’d just grab the ones I’m showing you below the next time you are at WalMart.

I couldn’t find black (which matched the shelves that I just made), so I painted them with chalk paint prior to starting this project.

You could also spray paint them black. 

BUT, be sure to paint them prior to glueing the wood frame as you want to put the mending plates on as soon as you get your boards glued together.

This will help secure the boards together when drying.

Mending plates were used to add to the look of the framed bathroom mirror, plus assist with the stability of the mirror.
Painting hardware black using chalk paint or spray paint to match other decor.

Simply “eyeball” where you think they look best. We put our mending plates in the center of where the two boards came together at the corners of the frame.

Using the mending plates to secure the boards together after using wood glue.

As you can see above, I had to go back and touch up the screws with black chalk paint.

It took less than a minute! Super easy and it pulled the look of the finished product together.

5. Attach D-Rings to Back Side of Frame to Allow You to Hang the Frame

I’m guessing that you are realizing we will NOT be attaching this frame to the mirror in any way. Instead, we thought it would be so much easier just to hang this like a regular frame, directly over the old mirror.

After allowing the wood glue to dry overnight, the D-Ring hangers were attached to the top of the frame (on the back of the frame) in each corner.

TIP: After determining where the hanger will go, I find that it is easier to hammer the tip of a nail into the board. This makes the screw go in a lot easier.

D-ring hangers were used to hang the frame around the simple bathroom mirror.
D-ring hangers are simple to place on the back of a light weight frame for easy hanging.

6. Use Drywall Anchors to Secure the Screws into the Wall Where You Will Hang Frame

Drywall anchors are the best, you guys. I use them all of the time.

They will make your new frame secure, especially for large mirrors.

If you aren’t sure how to use drywall anchors, take a look at this most to learn how to easily install drywall anchors yourself.

A dry wall anchor was used to hang the frame around the builder grade bathroom mirror.

Measure. Then measure again.

Measuring is probably the most complicated part of this simple project. Like hanging any picture frame or art work, just make sure you measure exactly.

After all your hard work, you want it to look perfect when it’s hanging!

Speaking of perfect, look how imperfect the painting is above. I knew it would be covered by the frame, so “good enough” was my thought process.

7. Hang New Frame Over Mirror

For the last step, hang the D-Ring hangers around the screws that you attached with drywall anchors and you’re done.

The back of the boards will be over the edge of the mirror, hiding the clips.

If you look really closely at the frame where it meets the mirror, you can see a small gap where the little plastic clips are. But it is honestly something I never notice.

Even though this is our guest bathroom, it is the only powder room in our basement and gets a lot of use.

The DIY bathroom mirror frame gave it a finished look that we just love. It looks like a new mirror.

A before and after shot of frame a simple bathroom mirror.

In the below image, I am pulling the frame away from the mirror to show you it is not connected.

Instead of glueing the frame to the mirror, it was hung like a regular frame!

SO much better!

As you can see the wood pieces just go directly over the vanity mirror, like a typical frame you would hang on the wall.

A easy way to give unframed mirrors an upgrade.

As you can see in the pictures, even when looking at the inside edge of the frame, the clips aren’t really visible.

Think of it as picture framing! You are simply using your tape measure to account for the width of the mirror as well as the height.

The frame lays directly over the simple bathroom mirror.
Nimbus blue bathroom with framed mirror

This diy frame works great for a large bathroom mirror.

If your frame is not terribly heavy, you could use command strips to hang your frame. This would be a perfect way for someone who is renting to upgrade a bathroom vanity without damaging the wall.

Once you try this easy project, you will find lots of places in the rest of the house where you can do it again!

Framed bathroom mirror with lights above.

That’s a wrap, folks!

Such a fun project that made a big difference in our little basement bathroom.

Why did it take 8 years to get this done?!

I hope you enjoyed my tutorial to frame a simple bathroom mirror. If you have any questions or comments, leave a note below!

Yield: 1 Framed Bathroom Mirror

How to Make a DIY Mirror Frame - Bathroom Mirror With Clips

A diy wooden frame hung over a builder grade bathroom mirror.

Follow these simple steps to frame a builder grade bathroom mirror with clips. No need for mirror adhesive. This simple project is an easy way to give a bathroom a makeover on a budget but also has a huge impact.

Active Time 1 hour
Additional Time 12 hours
Total Time 13 hours


  • Lumber cut to fit mirror (see below for details to get accurate measurements)
  • Wood stain of choice - I used Minwax Special Walnut
  • Optional: alternatively you could paint the frame vs. stain if this is your preference
  • Wood glue or liquid nails
  • Mending Plates to secure boards together
  • Chalk paint or spray paint to paint mending plates if desired (I used black chalk paint)
  • drop cloths
  • paper towels or rag to wipe excess wood glue as needed
  • D-ring hangers
  • drywall anchors (if unable to hang frame in studs)


  • Screwdriver
  • Paint brush for staining frame


  1. Measure for size of frame.
    If you do not have a circular saw or other tools to make wood cuts, home improvement stores will complete a straight cut on a piece of wood. For reference, our bathroom mirror measures 30 x 36 inches. My boards measured 2.5 inches wide by 34 inches long. So after the wood frame was assembled, it would measure 34" wide by 39" tall. How to measure for bathroom mirror frame
  2. Get wood cut to size needed. Get the wood cut to the exact measurements you need based on the size of your mirror. Do not forget to take into account the backsplash as well as the lights above the mirror.
  3. Paint or stain boards. I opted for staining my boards in Minwax Special Walnut. Follow instructions on can. Allow time to dry prior to moving to the next step.
  4. Connect corners of frame. The easiest way to ensure the boards are secure is to use wood glue and mending plates. The frame will need to be on a flat surface when allowing the glue to dry. When applying glue, use a liberal amount and press wood together firmly. Secure boards with mending plates. TIP: If you plan on painting the mending plates, do this prior to this step and allow dry time. If using chalk paint, it should only take a couple coats of paint and ~10 minutes to dry.
  5. Attach D-Rings to back of Frame. You will use these to hang frame onto wall.
  6. Measure and place screws in wall to hang frame. Measure once, then measure again. Make sure you put the screws exactly where needed to hang the frame. This is the same process you would use to hang any picture frame. If frame is large, drywall anchors might be helpful to ensure frame is safe and secure on the wall.
  7. Hang new frame over mirror. The frameless mirror will now have a more finished look. No mirror adhesive is needed. Custom mirror frames are an easy DIY project for large mirrors, making a huge impact. The frame will lay quite nicely, even over mirror clips. No need to remove the clips! A before and after shot of our framed bathroom mirror.


While this is a simple project, it is important for you to get exact measurements of your mirror and space prior to beginning. This will help you calculate the exact measurements of the boards you will be using to make the frame.


DIY wood frame over bathroom mirror.

Love a good DIY? Take a peek at these:

How to frame a bathroom mirror with clips.

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  1. i love this, i have lived in rented apartments my entire adult life and i have always wanted to add frames to the bathroom mirrors but couldn’t because i do not own the home. THIS is PERFECT for renters. Thanks for this..

    1. What a great perspective, Kimberly! You are so right. If the lease allows hanging of pictures on the wall, then this project would be perfect! My husband and I can’t believe how much of an upgrade it made in our bathroom for such a little cost. Enjoy your day!

  2. Great idea! Let me suggest something from another Pinterest suggestion: replace the mirror clips with a washer. I’d use one with a neoprene gasket to protect the mirror. Also, paint the back of the mirror black so the back of the wood doesn’t reflect in the mirror.

  3. I love this project, but I especially appreciate your easy-to-follow directions and pictures of the products you used. You are a wonderful teacher!

  4. How does this lay flat over the mirror clips? Did you have to change those out? Did you notch out the back of the frame?

    1. Hi, Becca! No, I did not cut out notches to go around the clips on the back side of the frame and honestly, it looks great (of course, in my opinion). The frame does not lay completely flush with the mirror due to the clips, but you would never know!

  5. I LOVE your idea to just hang the frame over the mirror! I’ve been wanting to add a frame to my bathroom mirror ever since we moved into our home, but wasn’t sure how to do it since we also have the mirror clips that extend out — not the flat type. (by the way, my clips are off center too! 🙂 I am wondering what type / size boards did you get… not a typical 1×4, which would be 3 1/2 inches wide… ? Thanks so much! I can’t wait to do this!!

    1. Thanks for the sweet comment, Gwen! It’s made a HUGE difference in upgrading the look of the mirror for very little cost and effort. I just remeasured and the exact dimension of the board .75 inches by 2.5 inches (So I guess it is a 1×3?). I hope that helps! Let me know if you have additional questions!

  6. Thanks for this awesome tutorial with tons of info and photos. I truly need this myself and feel confident I can do it on my own now! 🙂

  7. This is so adorable!!! Love the design , I feel like this is actually something I could do ! Thanks for the step by step how-to!

  8. This is awesome ! We framed a mirror but we glued it directly to the mirror. It is starting to separate and looks terrible! We will definitely need to try this instead.

    1. I was too chicken to glue the frame to the mirror, but it turned out pretty well just hanging it! It lays flush with the mirror, so you’d never know it’s not attached. Good luck with your mirror, friend;-)

  9. This mirror looks fabulous! I need to frame my boys shared bathroom mirror. It is a huge mirror. Saving this post for the future project!

  10. This looks great! I like that you don’t have to glue anything to the mirror or walls to get this look.

  11. This is awesome! I have been wanting to frame our bathroom mirror but have been wary about mitering the corners. I love the idea of using the mending plates! Genius! And it adds a nice industrial touch to it.

  12. OMG! I love it! That is so creative! And you can’t tell it is a “frame”. Great job!!!

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