How to Make a Sliding DIY Mirror Frame

Add modern styling and clever storage with this DIY sliding mirror project. Follow the entire process below.

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Complexity

Intermediate

Introduction

A nice medicine cabinet and, by extension, a handsome mirror can be the centerpiece of any bathroom and this modern sliding version is no different. It features all of the functionality of typical medicine cabinets but hides all of the ugliness behind the wall in a niche. An important part of this project is the wall’s stud size and location. Be sure to locate the studs before building the project and alter the dimensions to suit your needs. We designed the sliding mirror based on a 19-in. x 28-in. mirror and the 2x4 studs being 16-in. on center.

Tools Required

  • Caulk gun
  • Clamps
  • dado stack
  • Drill/driver
  • Drywall saw
  • Flexible putty knife
  • Iron
  • Miter saw
  • Nail gun
  • Sander
  • Table saw
  • Utility knife

Materials Required

  • 1-1/2” trim-head screws
  • 1/2” edge banding
  • 1/2” plywood
  • 1/4” pine mullion
  • 1/4” plywood
  • 16” Full-extension drawer slides
  • 1x3 board
  • 1x4 board
  • 2” brad nails
  • Mirror
  • Silicone adhesive
  • Wood filler
  • Wood glue

Cutting List

sliding mirror frame cutting listFamily Handyman

Project Plans

sliding mirror frame project plansFamily Handyman

Project step-by-step (7)

Step 1

Edge band the shelves

sliding mirror frame iron on edge bandingFamily Handyman

Rip and crosscut the 1/2-in. and 1/4-in. plywood to the dimensions based on the Cutting List. Cut the edge banding to a rough length with a utility knife. Iron on the edge banding to one edge of the cabinet shelves (A). Roll the edge banding with a J-roller or scrap wood to ensure good adhesion. Set the edge banding against the workbench and trim the excess edge banding with a utility knife. Sand the corners of the edge banding.

Step 2

Assemble the cabinet

sliding mirror frame assemble the cabinetFamily Handyman

Glue and clamp the cabinet sides (B) to the cabinet rails (A). Drill pilot holes and fasten with 2-in. trim-head screws. Glue and clamp the 1/4 in. plywood cabinet backing (C) to the back of the cabinet. Fasten the cabinet backing in place with 2-in. brad nails. Glue the shelves in place, so that the edge banding faces out. Fasten with 1-1/2 in. trim head screws.

Step 3

Add the mullion facing

sliding mirror frame add mullion facingFamily Handyman

Glue and clamp the facing rails (D) and stiles (E) in place. Fasten with 2-in brad nails. Fill the nail holes with wood filler. Sand the entire assembly and paint to your liking.

Step 4

Assemble the mirror

sliding mirror frame clamp stiles and assemble mirrorFamily Handyman

Cut a 1/8-in. deep x 1-in. wide rabbet into the edges of both mirror rails (F). Spread silicone adhesive into the rabbets of the mirror rail and attach the rails to the top and bottom of the mirror. Apply silicone adhesive to the 1/4-in. plywood mirror backing (H) and stick it to the back of the mirror and rails. Glue the ends of the rails and clamp the mirror stiles in place (G). Fasten the stiles in place with 2-in. brad nails. Fill the nail holes with wood filler. Sand the project and finish to your liking.

Step 5

Cut out the niche

sliding mirror frame cut out the nicheFamily Handyman

Locate the studs. Place the cabinet on the wall, between the studs, and mark the outline of the cabinet. Cut along the lines with a drywall saw.

Step 6

Place and secure the cabinet in the niche

sliding mirror frame place and secure cabinet in the nicheFamily Handyman

Place the cabinet into the niche, ensuring the cabinet is as far into the wall as possible and level. Attach the cabinet to the studs with four screws on each side of the cabinet.

Step 7

Attach the mirror to the wall

sliding mirror frame attach mirror to the wallFamily Handyman

Place a 1-1/2 in. wide spacer board on the top edge of the facing rail (D) and scribe a line parallel to the cabinet. Repeat for the bottom of the cabinet. This is the centerline for the cabinet member. Measure the distance between the two lines on the wall and center the dimension on the back of the mirror for the drawer member.

Center the drawer member on the back of the mirror and fasten it with the included screws. Center the cabinet member on the wall and mark the screw locations. Screw in the hollow wall anchors at the marked locations. Place the cabinet member on the wall and fasten it with the included screws. With the cabinet members closed, slide the mirror onto the wall.

sliding mirror frame featured image

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