mirrors

31
May

Mirror, mirror on the wall, make yours the cleanest one of all

Enhance the shine of your Pivotech framed mirror

Heavy use and a harsh environment take their toll on a bathroom and the hardware, shower screens and decorative elements in it. Maintaining the visual impact of your original design requires faithful cleaning.

This is particularly true for mirrors and highly polished hardware.

Tips to keep your framed mirror clean

Your toolkit:

  • a large sponge
  • a glass cleaning spray
  • a squeegee
  • a microfibre cloth or paper towels
  • rubber gloves
bathroom mirror

First, you want to get the whole mirror wet. Wet your sponge with hot water and wipe from top to bottom until the entire mirror is dampened. This will start to break up spots and marks and help more evenly distribute the glass cleaner. Squeeze any excess water out of your sponge.

Next, liberally spray glass cleaner over the mirror. Take your sponge and rub it over the mirror, cleaning off any smears, spots, toothpaste, soaps or stains. Give extra attention to the corners of the mirror where dust and dirt can settle.

Then, run your squeegee from top to bottom, left to right removing all traces of the glass cleaner. Step back and assess your success. If you see any smudges or streaks, wipe them away with your microfibre cloth or paper towel.

Lastly, wipe away any water splashes from around the mirror.

And voilà. Your Pivotech framed mirror clean, offering a true reflection of your interior style.

Alternatives to glass cleaners

Not keen on the commercial glass cleaning products for your mirrors? You’re not alone. Here are a few of the more popular alternatives:

  • 1/4 cup vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon liquid soap and 2 cups of water in a spray bottle
  • Undiluted vinegar with a splash of lemon in a spray bottle
  • 1/2 cup of lemon juice and 2 cups of water in a spray bottle
  • 1/2 cup vinegar or lemon juice, 2 cups water and 1/4 teaspoon of a vegetable oil based soap
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch with 2 litres warm water and apply to the mirror with sponge, then wipe with a towel

Now that you’ve got your Pivotech framed mirror clean and shining brightly again, you might want to consider ways to keep it fog free.

You can find a few commercial, chemical defoggers in the shops, but if you’re like me, the fewer products cluttering the cupboard, the better.

Option #1 – shave cream. Use a dollop of shave cream, cover the mirror, rub clean with a towel or microfibre cloth.

Option#2 – bar soap. Go over the mirror surface with a bar soap and then rub clean with a towel or microfibre cloth.

23
Nov

The design benefits of a purposefully selected mirror

The understated role of mirrors in interior design

At Pivotech, we nurture a healthy obsession with shower screens and wardrobes, and spend a lot of time thinking about bathrooms and home storage.

We also spend a lot of time thinking about details and the finishing touches that really pull a room’s design together. Mirrors often make up one of the most practical design elements you can add to a room. They enhance any room in the home, not just the bathroom (although we are partial to how fantastically a Pivotech concealed frame mirror complement Pivotech shower screens).

A mirror can make a room look bigger, brighter and more interesting. Although they’re an easy choice, mirrors aren’t always a simple choice. We compiled a guide to mirrors to review the various features you’ll want to consider.

Mirrors, an introduction

The right mirror contributes functionality and style to your home. Mirrors come in a variety of forms, each one satisfying a different purpose. You’ll want to consider the size of the space you have available and what will meet your needs.

  • Wall mirrors and mirror panels require a lot of wall space but bring more light and the illusion of more space to halls, dining areas and bathrooms.
  • Small, swing-arm mirrors offer a great option for finer, more detailed tasks, like applying make-up. When not in use, just tuck them away.
  • Mirrored panels on wardrobe doors allows you to check your outfit as you dress.
  • A standing mirror can be a statement piece with detailed design and bring a dash of panache to your bedroom.

Mirror Features

Choose the type of mirror glass for your purpose:

  • silvered – the most commonly used mirror in homes
  • antiqued – as the name indicates, the mirror has been treated, or “antiqued”, to give it an aged and distressed appearance
  • concave – preferred for hand and swing arm mirrors, the glass has been curved inward and enlarges the reflection
  • metal – made from a highly polished metal surface, these “mirrors’ can’t shatter
  • plastic – these plastic coated reflective surfaces a great option for safety

Size up your options

If you want to make a room seen bigger, or add dramatic flair to a foyer, bigger is often better. Consider a floor-to-ceiling mirror or a wall-to-wall mirror panel for maximum impact.

Standing mirrors and cheval mirrors are large options suitable for the bedroom. They give you a head-to-toe view for dressing to perfection.

Vanity and swing-arm mirrors are small but mighty. They provide a close-up reflection for plucking eyebrows or applying cosmetics.

Measure your room accurately before purchasing, and be aware that mirrors tend to look larger once installed

Life and style

Looking for drama or glam or wow-factor in a room? Want to soften harsh angles of square, blocky furniture or create some right angles in a soft, billowy room? Make it happen with a mirror.

Start by measuring the wall space carefully and determining what size and shape will work with you, not against you. Mirrors look bigger after they’re installed. If head to the showroom without a clear sense of the size you want, you may overwhelm the room once it’s hung.

Squares, ovals or round; swirls, sharp angles, arches; ornate, minimalist or sleek. Mirrors can be found in almost every imaginable shape in order to meet every taste and design sensibility.

Mirrors with right angles, like squares or rectangles, work equally well with classic or contemporary room design.

Rounded mirrors soften sharp angles of a dining table, desk or mantel. They deliver a more graceful flow of energy by allowing the eye to smoothly glide over the mirror frame.

Make a style statement with a sculptural shape. Highlight tall ceilings with arched mirror frames.

Venetian mirrors bring a touch of high fashion and glamour.

The framed, the frameless and the lighted

Framed

An interesting frame speaks style volumes. Generally, mirror frames can be aluminium, wood, acrylic, tile, plastic or metal. The type of frame you choose will depend on your design goals and your design budget.

One option growing in popularity is to reclaim antique mirrors by adding a fresh, designer DIY frame. Not only does this inject more of your personal style, it allows you to recycle and save waste.

Pivotech’s concealed mirror frame is a gorgeous blend of the benefits of the framed and the frameless mirrors.

Frameless

Like Pivotech’s semi-frameless and frameless shower screens, frameless mirrors work perfectly for minimalist design in modern spaces. Frameless mirrors allow for more usable mirror surface in smaller bathrooms. Plus, fewer nooks and crannies means they’re easier to clean.

Lighted

Too many bathrooms lack good lighting. More and more, homeowners are working around this by installing a mirror with lighting incorporated into the frame.

More than merely reflecting an image back, you want the mirrors in your home to reflect your personal sense of style and still be very usable and functional.

10
Aug

How to select mirror lighting

See a truer reflection with a well lit bathroom mirror

A poorly lit mirror poorly reflects on you. Dark shadows, bright spots and blinding lights don’t do anyone any favours. To ensure you put your best face forward, consider lighting location, the colour properties of the lights and the style of the fixtures.

Location

A common lighting design mistake with bathroom mirrors is to light the mirror instead of the face. This generally results in dark shadows on the face, making tasks like shaving or applying make-up difficult (plus, heavy under-eye shadows aren’t a good look for anyone). Optimal mirror lighting illuminates the entire face and eliminates, or significantly minimises, shadows under the eyes, chin and cheeks.

To achieve this, you want mounted light sources above and/or beside your bathroom mirror that provide diffused light. A lighting source above your mirror helps you see more clearly and a lighting source on both sides of your mirror eliminates shadows. Fortunately, options have come a long way since the days of Broadway/Hollywood-type lighting with strips of round bulbs framing the mirror. Mirrors with back lighting or surrounded by indirect LED lighting offer a stylish and practical solution.

If you choose to augment your exiting ceiling lighting with side lights, mount fixtures on either side of the mirror (90 to 100 cm apart is ideal) to cast even light across the face. Position the fixtures so the bottom edges of the shades are a little below eye level, or approximately 1.5 metres from the floor.

Colour

The colour properties you want to know address colour temperature and colour rendering.

Colour temperature refers to whether the light source appears cool (bluish) or warm (yellowish) or neutral. It is expressed in degrees Kelvin or K. Mirror lighting usually ranges from 2700K (incandescent) to 4200K (cool white). Daylight is 6500K and sunlight 5000K (although these values can change depending on season and time of day). Skin tones look most flattering in medium to warm colour temperatures (<3500K).

Colour rendering (CRI) is another key colour quality. CRI is a scale from 0 to 100, the higher the CRI the better. Incandescent and Daylight are 100, cool white and warm white are around 60.

Style

Light distribution is key in mirror lighting. Uniform, shadowless light is easy on the eyes. Fluorescent tube lights can be well suited to bathroom mirror lights (just make sure if the tube is mounted above the mirror, it’s long enough to illuminate both sides of the face). Spot lights and clear bulbs require shielding or diffusion for glare control.

Choose a fixture with a translucent lens. Clear lenses may be glaring. Opaque ones reduce the light passing to your face. You also don’t want the fixture to change the color of the light.

Keep in mind:

  • Use easy-on-the-eyes soft, diffused light
  • Choose a high (CRI)
  • Don’t point lights into the mirror

You want bathroom mirror lighting to be bright but not glaring; accurate, yet flattering; easy to maintain and practical. Give attention to the location of the lights, the colour properties and the fixture style and you’ll find a perfect reflection.

And if you’re looking for a perfect bathroom mirror, talk to your local Pivotech professional.

sources: homedit, Philips

13
Jul

The modern mirrored wardrobe door

Form and function benefits of sliding wardrobe doors with mirrors

Homeowners and decorators frequently choose mirrored wardrobe doors because they are so fantastically practical. However, they also offer several distinct design advantages, like increasing light, creating an illusion of more space and unique style.

Lighter, brighter, better

One massive advantage of wardrobe doors with mirrors is their ability to illuminate a room with reflective light. When placed strategically, mirrored wardrobes brighten up a space by reflecting either natural or artificial lighting.

Good lighting enhances mood and makes a space feel nicer to be in. Light highlights spaces and shapes, tones and textures and allows you to enjoy even more other design elements you incorporated into the room.

Maximising natural light helps save money by reducing the need for artificial lighting.

A spacious illusion

Decorators discovered long ago the power of mirrors to make a small room appear larger. Rooms feel roomier and tight quarters open up with mirrors.

Mirrored wardrobe panels “broaden” a room and create a feeling of flow. You get the sensation of being in a room larger than you actually are.

While an ideal choice for small spaces, large rooms benefit from mirrors, too.

Reflection of your style

Mirrors offer the ultimate blank canvas to complement the colours, textures and decorator trends you incorporate into the rest of the room. Your mirrored wardrobe panels reflect your overall design vision for a room and add to it.

However, keep in mind that if you’ve chosen a bold colour, a luxurous texture or an avant garde piece of artwork the mirrors will duplicate it. This can get a bit intense for some spaces. In these situations, you can either

1. choose to scale back your bold style choice and make it an accent piece rather than a focal point, or

2. only mirror door when the wardrobe system features two wardrobe doors or only mirror one or two doors when the wardrobe system features three or four doors.

You don’t have to sacrifice your individuality, just be deliberate about it.

Timeless style

Don’t let anyone tell you decorating with mirrors is a relic of the ’80s. When done right, decorating with mirrors results in a beautiful room. Give your room a mood lift and achieve your style goals with mirrored wardrobe doors. Talk to a member of our team to learn how.

20
Apr

Six tips for choosing the right sized mirror for your bathroom

Framed mirrors for the bath: it’s not design magic, it just seems like it

A Pivotech mirror in a bathroom makes a major difference in the success of the room’s function and interior design. Mirrors help bring a room to life. Their ability to make a room appear larger and brighter enhances the overall atmosphere and makes all your other design choices look even better. Design done right with mirrors can make them seem magical, but it’s really the result of careful planning and strategic choice.

The need for careful choice is particularly true when it comes to selecting the size of your framed mirror. A mirror too small for the space ends up surrounded by blank wall; it looks odd and out of place. While a mirror too large dominates the anchoring point (usually the vanity) and creates an awkward, boxy effect.

How to choose the right size mirror

1. To determine the ideal mirror width, measure the width of the vanity you plan to install the mirror above and limit your choice to a mirror, including frame, this size or smidgen smaller.

2. To determine the ideal mirror height, measure from the base of the vanity up to the lighting. Determine if you want a gap between the top of the mirror and the lights or if you want them flush. To avoid water spots, consider placing the mirror about 15cm above the vanity.

3. Give attention to windows in the bathroom. Choosing a mirror big enough to reflect a window, without hanging over the edge of the vanity, dramatically increases the natural light in the bathroom. Better lighting bring out the best in every other design feature you include in your bathroom.

4. Informed by the information you uncovered in points 1 through 3, determine the amount of usable mirror space you want or need. With a thicker frame, you may lose a lot of usable mirror space , which may result in it being difficult for two people to use the mirror at once. Pivotech’s framed mirrors are sleek, elegant and minimalist. They complement today’s design preferences perfectly and maximise usable mirror space.

5. If applicable, measure the recessed space where you intend the mirror to go. Generally, recessed spaces best accommodate a large, custom frame-less mirror, as the walls will naturally frame it. However, you can choose to treat it as just another wall, measuring the width of the space and determining frame thickness, one mirror versus two, etc., just as you would a flat wall.

6. Once you’ve determined the dimensions you think you want for your new bathroom mirror, cut a large piece of paper that size and tape it to the wall where you want the mirror to go. Give it a critical eye. Test what it looks like if the mirror is flush with the vanity or if you create gaps all the way around. You might want to try a couple sheets of paper to see what it would look like if you install two mirrors rather than a single, longer mirror. This practical visualization helps you to make the best choice when it comes to size.

Whether new construction, adding a new bathroom or renovating and existing one, mirrors offer a fantastic design solution. Mirrors aren’t magical, but their ability to enhance the stylish shower screen, tiles and other design elements in the bathroom makes them seem like they are.

9
Feb

Back to basics: landing a bathroom layout that works for you

Bathroom layout planning for a more functional, more attractive space

For most people, the inspiration driving a new bathroom is design and style. We get that and that’s why we design such an expansive range of stylish shower screensframeless glass hardware and framed mirrors. However, we also know no matter how beautiful the bath furnishings, the success of a newly constructed bathroom hinges entirely on the planning process and developing a really solid bathroom layout before any hardware or tiles are purchased.

Whether  installing a new bathroom or remodeling an existing one, start by answering these two key questions:

  • Who will use the bathroom
  • How will they use it

Clearly and specifically answering these questions will drive every feature and design decision going forward.

For example, appropriate lighting varies depending on the users and how they’ll use it. Will it be mom’s new ensuite where she’ll apply make up and check her outfits? Or will it be a guest bath that would be more inviting with softer, more natural light?

Similarly, if designing a bathroom for a maturing couple, focus on easy access  with wider doorways, taller toilets and sill-less showers. If the bathroom will be for a young and growing family, give attention to storage space and robust, fully framed shower screens.

As you work through the general bathroom design principles, the “right” answer for each depends on the answers to the two key questions.

General bathroom design principles

  • Focus on function above all else. The room must offer sufficient space for comfortable use. Make certain the door into the bathroom is easy to move around and people have enough room to dry themselves off, undress and dress.
  • Based on your answers to the key questions, plan for the appropriate number and size of mirror, counter space and storage space. Do you need a full length mirror or just an “over the sink” mirror. Do you need storage under the sink or can you have a pedestal sink to create a more spacious feeling?
  • Ensure the location is convenient to the bedroom(s) of the intended users.
  • Lighting is crucial with bathroom design. If at all possible, include natural light. In general, ensure the bathroom employs a combination natural and artificial light to meet the needs determined by the answers to the key questions. Consider the four types of lighting: task, ambient, accent and decorative. The strategically planned combination of these lighting types ensure the end result of a bright and functional bathroom space.
  • If it’s a newly constructed bathroom and not a remodel, chose a location near, above or below other rooms using water, such as the laundry room, utility room, kitchen or other bathrooms. If you can use existing hook ups, much of your detail planning may already be done. However, if this isn’t an option and moving of plumbing is required, do your homework to ensure you stay up to code and comply with regulations.

Adding a new bathroom to your home or remodeling an existing one can add to its overall value. Taking a moment to create a bathroom layout that takes into account the two key questions and the general bathroom design principles will yield massive benefits. This is one project where you don’t want to “wing it”. Once you give attention to nail down the basics, dive in and let the fun of choosing bathroom furnishing, colours, hardware and other design elements wash over you. Strategic planning keeps your bathroom functional and your design delightful.

8
Sep

Framed mirrors for light and style

Making your bathroom mirror work

Mirrors deliver a key feature in the design or redesign of any bathroom. When chosen and hung with intention, framed wall mirrors serve as an interesting and functional centrepiece, enhance lighting and create the illusion of space.

Be choosy

When selecting a new mirror for your bathroom, start with a few questions:

What size fits the space?

Mirrors deliver a lot of benefits, so you may feel an urge to go as big as you possibly can

What finish fits your design plan?

A frame finish chosen to contrast with the shower door, sink and and other bathroom hardware will add texture to the look. Whereas, a perfect match of finishes creates an elegant, spa-like sensibility.

Will one, two or three frames be better?

Particularly in smaller bathrooms, two or three mirrors may fit the space better and create a more interesting design element. You can also hang them on different walls to increase reflected light and the illusion of more space.

One large mirror draws the eye and fills a room with light. Consider hanging a smaller mirror on the wall opposite the large mirror. This helps to open up the space. For an interesting visual element, choose several small mirrors and hang them on the wall opposite the large one.

Bring it all together

The versatility of mirrors make them a way to give instant panache to a bathroom. They light up dark corners an add elegance to an area. By reflecting the movements and design elements around them, they even replace artwork. Incorporating fresh design ideas utilising bathroom mirrors enhances the appearance of large and small bathrooms. Choosing a mirror to coordinate with the style of your bathroom will add depth and dimension, creating a bright and fresh room.