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Shell Frame Tutorial by Nate Berkus

Let's learn from Nate Berkus how to make a shell frame for a mirror!

shell frame
You probably know interior designer Nate Berkus. He was a frequent guest on the Oprah show, surprising people with room makeovers, then moved on to his own show. And it so happens that Nate has a shell frame tutorial posted on his site. Here it is in a nutshell!


shell frame turial step by step
First off, he's protecting the glass of the mirror with craft paper. Then Nate creates a nice even lining on the inside with small shells. He uses two-part epoxy glue sold at any hardware store. I'm sure you can use a glue gun too. I guess Nate wanted to play it extra safe.

adhere shells to frame
After the lining is done, he places the larger shells along the outside of the mirror and allows for the glue to dry overnight. After that he fills the gaps with medium and small shells.

shell mirror
And the beautiful shell frame is complete. You could be more elaborate if you wish by simply gluing on more shells. For the full tutorial, read How to Make a Shell Mirror. Tip: A flat frame provides a smoother gluing surface for shells, but a decorative frame will give a fuller look.
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17 comments:

Della said...

I would love to do this! A shell frame is a must for any coastal inspired home! Thanks for finding this Maya!

simpledaisy said...

Ooh! So pretty!!!

simone said...

Hey, these are gorgeous. I will make one once I find a cheap mirror to dressup. Ikea here I come.

michelle said...

Just beautiful!!!!
xoxo

Debbie~refreshrestyle.com said...

So glad you stop by refreshrestyle! So glad you are presenting this shell mirror---I've been wanting one. I love it!
Thanks,
Debbie

CalypsoInTheCountry said...

I would love a shell mirror! So pretty!
-Shelley

mickey johnson said...

i love these mirrors. they are so symetrical and even (of course, it is nate berkus after all) especially the way he lines around the edge of the mirro first with smaller shells. very nice touch!

An Island Mom said...

Wow, you may have inspired me to try making one myself. I always see them in the stores and wonder if I could make my own.

Sherri said...

I love shell mirrors and this tutorial just might convince me I can do it!! Thanks for sharing!

Love of the Sea said...

Thank you for sharing this. I am going to keep this one as a reference tool...as I have an old mirror that I want to do this with...I have the mirror, I have the shells, now I just need to make the time! Hope you are having a great week. I am off to NYC - back on Thu night. I'll drop you a note and see if you want to go up to Sunny Isles and check it out!

Cat & Cricket said...

Beautiful..beautiful! Now let me have a go!
Have a wonderful week!
Smiles~
C

Pat said...

I love this looks... And to make it happen, I'd get to travel to Sanibel Island, shell capital of the world!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I'm so happy to have this info! I bought a shell framed mirror awhile back...but some of the shells had fallen off! I got a great deal on it but it needs some work! I'll want to work on it when I get back to FL in a few months...hope I can find this info again! I have an idea...maybe I could just remember it! heeheehee! ♥

pam @ iLoveShelling said...

Oh Maya- great post! I wish I had time to craft again. I get lots of questions about shell frames- I'll send them over to you for this great tutorial.

Lucy & Larry said...

I must try this one of these days, I love these shell frames and mirrors! Would be fun to use sea glass as well!

Lili said...

Great tutorial and such gorgeous shell mirrors! ~Lili

Summerland Cottage Studio said...

I have been in seashore inspired heaven perusing your beautiful blog !
Thank you, thank you, thank you !