Joy and Pain, Sun(burst Mirror) and Rain

We are now a card carrying member of the sunburst mirror club.


I need to interrupt though, because if you’re anything like me, having read the title of this post, you now have the first chords of Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock banging around your groggy head. You’re welcome.

Sorry, I’m back.  Now that I’ve told you about the club, you’ll realize there are members everywhere.



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Of course when I saw a string of these I could DIY on the cheap, I added it to my project list.  There were lots of varieties. Some with paint stirrers:

some with dowel rods:

some with cardboard:

all lovely. BUT… the ones I liked the most used shims.  They felt a little more consistent with the real deal, I liked the scale, and… still simple to construct.  I checked out this and this post to make sure I was on the right track.


  • 20 packs of shims (give or take)
  • wood glue
  • round mirror (mine was $5.99 from HomeGoods)
  • spray paint (I used metallic gold)
  • small piece of plywood for hanging
  • D rings for hanging

The first thing I did was lay out my shims to see if they came together as easily as these blogs made it sound.  They do, they really really do.


I played around with ‘ray’ patterns: some more uniform, other’s more varied… I liked the varied.


For assembly, I followed the lead of these other bloggers, and made each ‘ray’ individually first.  My system was very detailed and sophisticated (not)… I wanted each shim to be about an inch below the next so I figured out one, traced it, and then used this outline as my guide for all the others.



At first, I made my rays and used clamps to hold them together; but my gorilla wood glue was pretty tacky so by the end I just glued and waited for them to dry.


Piecing them together was simple, but getting the ‘perfect’ circle was trickier.  I used a piece of newspaper to help guide my rays and tried to manipulate them all as best I could before the glue dried.  I had to get creative where the circle came together and ended up inverting a couple of shims so the wider side was actually towards the middle of the circle.



I let the shims dry for a day, then glued my round mirror right on top being careful to measure that it was centered (that’s what those yellow hash marks are for…).



After a day for the glue to dry, I spray painted it metallic gold.  (Any color would have looked fine, in my opinion, but many of these sunburst mirrors are a metallic of sorts.)  I simply taped some newspaper over the mirror (trimming the rough edge with an exacto knife) and sprayed the whole thing.


For hanging, I used my jigsaw (Mark has since deemed it the best tool in our tool collection) to cut a circle out of some scrap plywood.  With super strong industrial gorilla glue, I stuck this on the back of the mirror.


Two D-rings and some picture wire later…


TA-DA. (Sorry pictures were taken at night….)






I hung this in the library for now; it’s adjacent to the living room where there are lots of other gold accents.  It’s heavy- maybe 10 lbs- but so far it feels sturdy enough. I can’t wait to see how it looks during the day with the sun pouring in!  (Sun bursting onto my sunburst mirror if you will…)




5 thoughts on “Joy and Pain, Sun(burst Mirror) and Rain

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