Make your own ornamental mirror
If you enjoy using a router for projects, or are looking for a project to practice your router skills, this ornamental mirror frame is ideal.
2 of 600 x 600mm 12mm MDF
Template for circle and steel ruler
Router and decorative cutting bit
120 and 240-grit sandpaper
Quick clamps 
Tape measure and pencil
1. You can have MDF sheets cut down to size at your local Builders. Some stores allow you to option to buy half a sheet, so check beforehand.
2. Use a circular template to draw the outline for the curved arches. Make sure the template you use creates a shape that is in proportion with your finished design.
3. Use a steel ruler to draw the corners. My ruler is 50mm wide and the perfect width to use as a guide for the width of the frame.
4. To draw the inner line for the arches, cut a 50mm wide block and use this as a guide to make it easier to draw your curved lines.
5. After drawing out two shapes and making sure it is in proportion, use a jigsaw to cut out the centre sections of both pieces.
6. Check that both pieces are accurate, or sand if necessary, and glue the sections together. Clamp overnight.
7. Sand the glued frame to make sure everything is perfectly straight. Any bumps or dents will show up on the finished frame.
8. To route out the frame I used my Triton router mounted in the Triton router table. This is my preferred method for routing nowadays and it is much easier and faster than using a free-standing router.
Tips for using a router mounted in router table:
- Only work the piece from right to left across the router bit.
- Do two runs, the first being to remove some of the material and the last to complete the cutting. This will reduce strain on your router and extend the cutting edges of the router bit.
9. After routing use 120- and then 240-grit sandpaper on the edges before painting or finishing as desired.
Take the finished frame along to a glass/,mirror merchant, so that they can outline the shape to cut a piece of mirror to fit. Attach the mirror to the back of the frame using glass pins.
You have to option to paint using chalk paint for a distressed look, as per the design at the top of this page, or to use Rust-Oleum 2X spray paint for a more modern look, as shown below.