We have been using mirrors for centuries, but they have been more than just an item that is used to check out your hair or makeup (although they do that really well). For such a simple device, they are possibly the most popular home decor item you can find.
Their simplicity belies their true form, being able to adapt to any home or office, and at once fitting in, and creating that room.
A mirror, just by itself and with no decorative elements, can add light to a room by careful positioning. Place the mirror on a wall that receives the most natural light, and it can fill the whole room by reflecting it.
That same mirror can also make a smaller room feel much larger. Even though we know it is just a reflection, a properly placed mirror, even if not large, gives the feeling of more space.
Try adding a couple of mirrors to a small apartment or small office space and you will instantly see what I mean.
At once we have a functional, yet decorative item. But to add to this, we can put a frame of almost any description to the mirror, and there is the choice of shape and size.
To decide the later, look at the overriding forms of the furniture and accessories in the room the mirror will go in to. Are there mostly flowing lines and curves, or is the furniture square and functional? This will suggest a rounded mirror or a mirror with square corners.
Does the room have large pieces of furniture or other accessories? If so a large mirror will need to be used to match it up. A wall with lots of pieces of art will need to make sure that any mirror hung in that room will also need to match. This will include matching the size and shape of anything else in the room hung on the walls. An exception to this would be if you intend to make the mirror the central theme of the room, then it would be quite large or ornate, with other art in the room positioned around it but much smaller and less ornate, so the focal point is clear.
The final consideration, and already touched up, is the type of frame. As you may know, frames come in many different colours, materials, and designs. Again, matching the frame to the already existent decor of your home is essential. A modern style of home or office requires a more simple metal or plainer wooden frame, whereas an older home, or one in which the furniture or other art tends to have a leaning towards the ornate, dictates that your mirror frame should be the same.
Try to match timber stain colours, textures or frame designs, but if you can not get those the same a good trick would be to go with something completely different (while maintaining the style). Those small changes may not be immediately noticeable but will make the room feel unsettled or uncomfortable.
The terrific thing about mirrors is that there is a default position that works really well in many instances. If you are not sure about the right frame design, colour and weight, then you can opt for a frameless mirror. Frameless mirrors do not have to be a chunk of glass tacked to your wall (like you might have in your bathroom - that appropriate), but rather designs made from the mirror itself. The most popular of these are art deco designs made from the glass itself. Other designs include using pieces of coloured mirror to make a tessellated design.
As a final note, you may have different designs, colour palettes and requirements for different rooms of your house or office, so place your mirrors according to that room - they may not be interchangeable.
While it is clear that you would not want to overspend on a mirror, don't also 'go cheap' on your mirror selection. Like most things in life, you get what you pay for. It is well worth the effort to pay that little bit extra to have a mirror that is going to do its job properly. Depending on what you are after that may mean being not noticed but serving the purpose of a mirror at its core, or providing light or space to a room, or it may be more actively being part of the art or decor of a room. Either way, a compromise or poor selection dictated by economy may have a jarring or downright off-putting effect that does the opposite of its intention.
So perhaps look at spending that bit more and get what you are really after.
If you are not sure, then it would be wise to speak to an expert in interior design or art at a shop like Print Decor, and really work it out for your office or home.