I can’t remember the last time I had so much fun creating. I found myself completely engrossed in the task of creating a mirror with random toys. Earlier this year, I went to Israel (you can find more about the trip here) and met mother and artist, Tal. I spent hours in her studio, creating a Mirror of Happiness (as she calls it) to take home to Australia with me. It’s easy to make, but there is a process for effectiveness.
- Wooden mirror
- Toys and other items (for ideas on what to collect, take inspiration from the images below)
- Hot glue gun (You need A LOT of glue, so I recommend getting a big (thick) glue gun for this project)
It really depends on how big you want your mirror to be, but I suggest starting with a smaller project before moving on. I found this mirror (pictured below) which is PERFECT for a starter project at Spotlight. For a bigger project, I suggest sourcing a large piece of MDF to size, and then do the same with the mirror, making the mirror circle slightly smaller to allow for enough space to place toys around.
Step 1: Collect
Collect toys and other items. You will need a lot of toys for this project, so I suggest having a box up in the cupboard somewhere where you collect broken, old, not-played-with toys, or other items from second-hand shops. When you have a collection ready, then you can start planning. Here’s a start of my next collection.
Tal had boxes and boxes and boxes of toys in her studio. It was amazing. A lot of the toys were broken and there were items that I would never have thought would be useful, like bits of plastic, jewellery, old chains — anything really!
Think outside the box and collect all kinds of things. I’ve started a list below:
- game board figures
- hair clips
- Lego figuriens
- Lego heads
- Lego boards
- Lego blocks
- matchbox cars
- Barbie shoes/accessories
- Barbie heads/legs
- My Little Pony figurines
- train tracks
- plastic lids
- small balls
- cookie cutters
- bits of plastic
- artificial flowers
- McDonalds toys
PS. You won’t need quite this much!
Step 2: Sort
Once you have a good collection, sort through the toys and pull out any that catch your eye. Keep in mind it is important to have four layers when you’re creating.
- Layer 1: Flat toys/items
- Layer 2: Bigger toys/items
- Layer 3: Smaller toys/items
- Layer 4: Fill the gaps
Below is a quick video of when we tipped all the toys out. So satisfying!
Step 3: Layer 1 – Flat items
Cover the wooden parts of the mirror with flat items like blocks, bits of plastic, material off-cuts, Lego pads, lids, puzzle pieces, cardboard etc. This covers the wooden base.
Step 4: Layer 2 – Add medium/large toys
On the top of the flat layer, add the larger/medium toys or items. Examples: Large buttons, small balls, figurines, Duplo, Barbie head/legs, match box cars.
Step 5: Layer 3- Add smaller toys/items
Look for gaps to add smaller toys, like Lego figures/hats/heads, buttons, dice, beads, game board pieces, Barbie shoes, jewellery, brooches and other smaller toys.
Step 6: Layer 4 – Fill the gaps
Fill the gaps with lego and other small items/toys, and line the edges with thin flat objects like lego pieces, pen lids and pencils.
Step 7: Hang and enjoy the happiness!
This is my completed mirror. I love it!
And take a look at this HUGE one Tal made. How awesome is it!!
AND this one. EPIC!
Remember to be generous with glue when you’re applying items to the mirror. I transported my mirror all the way from Israel to Australia in my suitcase and nothing fell off…and it’s been hanging for months, giving me a lot of happiness.
More Posts from Israel
- What I learned From Israel and the Women Who Live There
- Chats over Good Food: Parenting in the Holiest Cities in the World
- It Takes a Village to Raise a Child: Inside a Kibbutz Commune in Israel
- Why I was Homesick in Israel
- Tower of David Museum
- Rediscovering My Motivation
- Anti-Bullying Technology
- Eat Cake With Your Hands