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Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

Posted by 4allisons (My Page) on
Wed, Aug 31, 11 at 20:57

We got through last week's earthquake just fine, but with two painful exceptions: a pair of HUGE antique mirrors that have been handed down through the family. Both were knocked to the floor and the mirrors shattered. We learned two things: 1) OF COURSE we don't have earthquake riders in Virginia (duh), and 2) mirror glass is not recyclable.

But now I'm left with two sizable but thoroughly broken mirror frames. The family *stories* would have us believe that these are really old (1800s), but as you can see in the pictures (below) the frames took as much of a beating as the glass did.

My first reaction was "well, they're broken, I hate to do it but it's time for the trash can." My second reaction was "wait a minute, maybe the gardenweb antiques forum would have an opinion!"

Do these look repairable? Obviously, there would be a lot of woodwork involved, plus getting someone to cut some custom mirror glass. My *guess* is that it's still time for the trash bin, but what do you guys think?

Trash? Or treasure?


table-01 table-03

table-02 table-04


wall-01 wall-04b




What do you think?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

Both very repairable......I especially would want the lyre framed one fixed because it likely goes with a dresser. A skilled wood work shop can repair that frame and you will never know.
The other mirror I think is older and also very repairable.
Don't let a stupid earthquake take away your family heirlooms....hav e them fixed.
I broke the top off an old sewing rocker many years ago....just knocked it over when vacuuming....I had it repaired and I defy you to tell where the break was.
They can be fixed.
Linda C

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

I would have them repaired. Both are wonderful! But if you do choose to toss them please post your address so I can pick them up before the trash man! Ha Ha!

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

Barely broken!

Except the glass of course. You could have the new mirrors antiqued but let's be serious--there's nothing wrong with shiny new mirrors that have a story attached to them like an east coast earthquake.

Secure them to the wall this time (says the person who lives on an active and overdue fault and hasn't secured a thing) in case of aftershocks!

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

Well that's encouraging. And yes, I'm fine with a shiny new mirror. Any suggestions for how to find a custom-mirror cutter? Or any idea how much a custom-cut mirror is gonna cost? I'm already a *little* intimidated by the dowel-based construction of the wall-mirror. I mean, those dowels were all broken off ... I suppose I can invent something to solve that, but the bigger question is the custom cutting. Any hints or guesses on price?

And thanks all for the encouragement!

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

Fori - ditto!

Re the OP: I would think woodworker first, mirror shop after, and dowels can be drilled out and replaced.

I haven't done mirrors myself, but I've seen enough big ones for sale and for free on craigslist to wonder if you can have a bigger one cut down?


RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

I think the rectangular one should be fairly inexpensive, but the curvy one, especially if you need it beveled, might be a bit more. But it simply must be done!

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

The "dowel-based construction" actually makes life a heck of a lot easier for a nearly seamless repair. "Barely broken" is spot on. The mirrors will undoubtedly be your biggest expense, but well worth preserving and detract little from the originals. I feel your pain :-)

RE: Antique mirrors broken in earthquake

A glass company will be able to make the mirrors. I know the one in my area looks very basic in its marketing, as if it only does windshields or plate glass windows, but actually can do just about anything.

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