Recycled Magazine Mirror Revamp

What happens when you take a couple of old magazines, glue and a pair of scissors?

When thinking about something to do as a crafty make for each issue, we end up getting carried away and have to reign ourselves in a little. This particular project is, in truth, a little time consuming to begin with. You’re going to want to make sure that you’ve made enough of the magazine spirals to decorate your mirror, photo frame, etc.  Once you’ve made your spirals though, the next stage is relatively quick.


To make your paper spirals you will need

  • Magazines
  • PVA Glue
  • Scissors or a scalpel, ruler and cutting mat

I also used a tray covered with a sheet of baking parchment and a couple of pebbles to help hold the spirals until the glue set.



The fibres in paper all flow in one direction which is why it’s easier to tear the page of a magazine in half across, rather than down.

1 Using your craft knife, cut the pages out of your magazine close to the spine.  Cut these pages in half, you should now have two sheets of paper for each page.

2 With the longest side of the sheet towards you, fold each sheet of paper in half four times in total.  Do this with all of your sheets of paper.




Step 3: Place a generous dab of PVA glue on one end of your folded strip.

Step 4: Keeping everything held together, roll the rest of the strip into a spiral.

Step 5: If you want to make a small rosette, move on to step 6

Please note, making the rosettes is quite messy. You will definitely get glue all over your fingers and the rest of the strip.  Don’t worry about this as PVA dries clear and the ‘extra’ will ensure your rosettes stay together. 




Step 6: Holding the spiral firmly by the sides, place a dab of glue on the inside of the end of your strip only. Hold in place for approximately 30 seconds and leave to dry.

For speed, I set my rosettes on a tray to dry and wedged a pebble against the ends to hold them in place while they dried.

Step 7: If you would like to make a larger rosette, place PVA on the top and bottom of the end of the last strip and attach your new strip.

Step 8: Attach as many strips as you require and then glue the end as in step 6.


From right to left the finished rosettes have been made using 1, 2, 3 and 4 strips.

The larger your rosette the longer it takes for the glue to set. I did try using a hot melt glue gun for some of the rosettes, but be warned you will burn your fingers.

After a couple of evenings you’ll have a good supply of rosettes made.  Ideally you should make them in different sizes, depending on what you’re going to decorate with them.

Now for the fun part! Be sure to find something suitable to decorate, junk shop bargain mirrors and picture frames are ideal.  You could also try covering a lampshade, the top of a chest of drawers, and a side table would look really effective if you then lay a sheet of toughened glass over it.


You will need:

  • Lots of completed rosettes, I made two magazines worth, but still had a good few left
  • Something to decorate
  • Silicone glue

To save time and make it easier, lay out your rosettes in the order you’d like them. At this stage you can re-order them until you’re happy with the final look.

Squeeze a generous drop of glue on to the back of a rosette to fix it to the mirror.  Repeat with each of your spirals until you’ve stuck them all down.

Leave your mirror in a well ventilated room to dry.

Clean any silicone residue up (a sharp blade is the easiest thing to use) and polish the mirror, before hanging into place.