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Mirror, mirror on the wall

Reflections on the power of mirrors in home decorating — the local angle

Posted: February 13, 2009 10:42 p.m.
Updated: February 14, 2009 4:55 a.m.
I'll admit it.

Each year that passes gives me more reasons to avoid looking at my own reflection in mirrors. Combine that with the fact I'm too cheap to buy artwork, and you'll understand why there are a lot of bare walls in my house.

Maybe you feel similarly.

However, if you are thinking about selling your home, or just want to spruce it up, you might have to get over your mirrorphobia.

As outlined in our accompanying story about "remodeling" your home with mirrors, this is a fairly low cost and efficient way to increase your home's appeal and, therefore, increase its value.

To add detail and emphasis to the points brought out in that story, we offer some insights from Scott Mittelman, owner of Preferred Glass and Windows in Saugus. Preferred has been in business in the SCV since 1969.

"We service literally anything pertaining to glass," Mittelman said. And he added that 75 percent of their business is with residential customers - local homeowners. The company's expertise covers windows and doors, shower doors, glass table tops, all glass repairs and, of course, mirrors and mirrored closet doors.

"There are two main benefits to mirrors," Mittelman said. "They make rooms lighter and brighter, and they give the illusion the room is larger."

But they can do so much more than that, and he offered an example.

"I had a customer once, who lived by the ocean. But he couldn't see the ocean from his living room. We put a mirror on the wall, which reflected a view of the ocean into the living room," he said. He added that the same effect can work for views of the mountains or skies.

Sometimes adding a full length mirror in a bathroom or bedroom helps people when they are getting dressed. This can be a narrow mirror in an appropriate place on a wall or on the back of a door. Mirrored closet doors accomplish the same thing and "expand" the room at the same time.

"Mirrors can be done in any shape, size or configuration," Mittelman said. And if they are covering things on walls, such as phone jacks or electrical outlets, the mirror can be made with a cutout over the spot, and a mirrored cover put in place that makes the jack or outlet much less noticeable.

"We've had a big push in the last six months of people bringing in frames. They want the mirror installed in the frame," Mittelman said.

Mirror features
Mittelman said that "regular" mirrors come with a safe, polished edge so people can't cut themselves. But other mirrors also have bevels of varying width, which add eye appeal. One or more V-grooves inscribed in the mirror can accomplish the same thing.

While Mittelman said that 99 percent of mirrors are "clear," you can also get gray mirrors or bronze mirrors for a darker effect.

He noted that mirrors manufactured in the United States have the highest quality and that all the mirrors offered by Preferred are made in the U.S.

Easy installation
Preferred Glass and Windows can do custom installations when necessary. "We do all our own installations, and everybody in the office is knowledgeable," Mittelman said. He added that the company's contractor's license specifies it is for the glass trade, as opposed to being general.

Mittelman noted that a contractor's expertise is invaluable when it comes to installations, as certain safety features are required by law. For example, a mirror over a tub has to have a safety backing. It's the same with wardrobe doors.

Because of the wide variety of possibilities, from the type and size of mirror to the location where it is installed, there was really no way Mittelman could put a general price on installations. But he said, "We're competitive. We live in the community and are committed to service. Ninety-five percent of our business is by referral or repeat customers."

Mittelman explained that one of the best parts about "remodeling" with mirrors is that installation is fast and low-impact.

"Most mirror jobs are done very quickly - the majority in several hours or less," he said. "There is no big dumpster outside."

Preferred Glass and Windows is located at 23032 Soledad Canyon Road in Saugus. The telephone number is (661) 298-2165 and the Web site is


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