Taking the indoors outdoors is a long running trend, and many of us are constantly looking for fresh ideas to make their outside space more homely. From garden furniture to outdoor lighting and cooking, transforming your patio into an open air room is great for socialising and relaxing in comfort. A question we’re often asked is: Can you put mirrors outside? The answer – of course you can!
But what’s important is obviously how the chosen mirrors will fair in the conditions outdoors. If you take regular mirrors out, they will generally weather and stain over time. You can, however, buy a range of specially made garden mirrors which are weatherproofed to survive the wind and rain.
The next question is why would you want to put up mirrors in your garden? Particularly for smaller gardens, mirrors reflect back so much light and space it can make them seem much larger, brighter and airier. Besides that, there are so many ornate and decorative mirrors that simply enhance your garden by being there on a fence or wall.
The simplest form of outdoor mirror is the acrylic sheet, similar to what you might see in a gym or dance studio. These are much stronger and more durable than glass, and can often be cut to the perfect size or shape for the spot you desire. Coloured versions are also available if you want to jazz up a corner of your patio.
Of course, a garden mirror can be a purely decorative feature. Some of the most intriguing are illusion mirrors. These are cleverly designed to look like slightly ajar windows or gates, with the mirrored surface behind appearing to lead to another part of the plot. You’ll find these more effective than you’d imagine once in place, with the glimpse of an unreachable garden opening up your outdoor space.
Which material is best for outdoors?
Garden mirrors can be made from either glass or acrylic. Traditionally mirrors are made from glass, which is a very hard material and resistant to minor scratches – useful when exposed to the weather and wildlife outside! But acrylic can actually produce mirrors that are 10 times stronger than glass, making them much more shatterproof. They are also a lot lighter, so perfect for attaching to fences without straining them. Acrylic mirrors can be glued or screwed to a flat surface, and it’s often possible to cut them to any desired size or shape yourself.
So what are you waiting for?
The great thing about outdoor mirrors is how flexibly you can use them. A small arched mirror could be a subtle reflector on the fence, brightening up a corner patio, while a dramatic illusion gate could become the talking point of your garden. We’d love to see how you’ve used mirrors outside in inspiring ways!
Read our follow up article: Are Garden Mirrors Safe?