Sunday, April 3, 2011

Boys' Room Decor: A License Plate Mirror

I have two boys, both of whom have inherited the car gene that runs throughout my husband's side of the family.  Before I met my husband, I always appreciated a nice looking car and the tradition behind making them.  After all, my father worked 42 years at Ford Motor Co. Once I met my husband though, I learned what true passion really is really about.  They are all true car aficionados and I love that it is something that ties his whole family all together.

My husband has a classic car, his father has three and all the other uncles and cousins, for the most part, have at least one classic car.  The first time I went to my future IL's house, my husband and I walked through the house to the garage where my FIL was.  He looked at me and said, "Its ok that you had your shoes on in the house, but you're in the garage now.  You need to take them off."  He was kidding of course, but he does keep a clean garage!

So, when we moved and were choosing which decor route to go with for my oldest son's room, we knew it would be a car theme.  One of my favorite things in the room is this:

I first saw an article a few years or so ago on BHG about making a mirror like this.  I mentally filed it away until we moved and then got started on it once we moved.  Because my husband is a hoarder collector of car related things, he had a stash of old license plates for me to go through and choose from. 

There's really nothing complicated to making this.  To make mine, I used a .5" thick piece of plywood that was 15 1/2" x 15 1/2".  I painted in red with a gallon of BM paint that I found at ACO for .50! (No kidding!)

Using a ruler, I drew a line from one corner to the next, making an  "x" on the board.  Your mirror and license plates will cover the "x", so don't worry about it showing.

I then secured a 10" square mirror that I bought at Michaels in the center with mirror mastic.  To get it straight, line up your corners so they are all touching a line. 

After that was secure, I took four license plates that were all the same size and figured out a layout that looked best.  Once I had that figured out, I used more mirror mastic to glue them to the board, framing the mirror.  Be sure to not put the mastic too close to the screw holes or it will seep out once you add pressure to the plates.  Now, all you need to do it find some heavy books to add some pressure to the plates so they stay secure while they dry.

This BHG link will show you how to add a wire to hang your mirror.  We opted to just use one of these and it is as secure as can be.

We let it sit overnight before hanging it and it was an instant hit with my son! 
Here it is again:

Here are a few more shots of my son's room so you can see how well the mirror fits in with everything else.

And whoever guesses who came up with the design for this mural and can tell me how they knew wins top honors:

Don't you love how whoever built this house decided to just randomly stick knobs and switches in the center of the wall?  Argh!!

I actually think this mirror would look great in a variety of decors.  I like it for my son's room because it will grow with him. 

Hope everyone had a great weekend and has a wonderful week ahead.
I am still plugging away on the laundry and finally primed the hutch that will go in there today. 

Linking up here:


Keeping It Simple


  1. This is really, really cute!!!Came over from Homemaker on a Dime.

  2. hiya ,awh how cute is this , what little boy (or big one even lol)wouldnt love this x tfs xmaggiex

  3. Love the way this came out! I am your newest follower! Come visit me!

  4. This is sooo cool! Love the car theme in the bedroom and what a perfect accent piece! Hope you will share with my Pink Hippo Party @

  5. Really cute!! I love all the little details.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog--I'm looking forward to seeing all your projects. =)

  6. What a cute idea! I have a friend who has so many plates, they collect them! I am passing on your idea!

  7. LOVE this idea! Perfect for a little boy's room!

  8. Cool! I love how you reused those old plates. The mirror idea is genius!

  9. cute, cute, cute. what a great idea

  10. I love this idea. If I can find some Wyoming cowboy plates it would go great in my son's room.

  11. I love this idea! I might be making this for my Dad for Father's Day, perfect garage decor, you know. Found you on Homemaker on a Dime.

  12. Neat idea! What boy would not love it. Thanks for sharing with my newbie party.

  13. so cute! we're going with the car theme for the big boy room! I think it's too precious

  14. What a clever way to use license plates! A perfect accessory for that room. So fun!

  15. Love it! Such great colors--I am a new follower.

  16. What a cute idea! Great for little boys room!
    You got a lovely blog here :)


  17. I would LOVE to have you link up to my PARTY! WHASSUP WEDNESDAY!!

    And I have a party button you can grab and put on your blog so your friends can come too:)



    Girl...That is DARLING! Love it!

  18. lovvvve the liscense plate mirror!!!!! your blog name is totaly adorable as well.... so cute!

  19. Everything in your boy's room looks awesome. This license plate mirror is sooo unique that I had to look at it twice :) Thanks for sharing this at the Creative Bloggers' Party & Hop.