Mirrors are best used when they will reflect something worthwhile. Too often they are considered a quick fix and reflect an empty wall or stairwell. They are not to be used as a stop gap. Think about that fireplace and before you put the mirror on the mantel, have a seat and really look at what might be showcased, too often it is the ceiling fan and wall beyond!
In the case of your dining room, rather than a vast empty table, dress it with a runner, a floral arrangement and candleholders. Have it reflect abundance. If you want a more contemporary look, a collection of ceramics or even art glass could be created for reflection.
Mirrors in the bathroom are too often frameless, endless expanses. Consider adding picture molding (if attached to the glass with double stick foam tape, it won’t affect the walls adversely when removed.) This is easy to do with the wealth of framing resources today. Be sure to select a style in keeping with your scheme or match your fixtures, brass/gold, chrome/silver.
If molding is too traditional for you, add beveled glass strips in the same manner, available at most home improvement locations with tape backing for easy application.
If you have the luxury of a remodel or new home, use framed mirrors rather than plate mirror attached to the wall. These are flexible and infinitely more attractive. Be sure to use the largest possible, you don’t ever want to cut off anyone’s face or top of their head, even metaphorically!
Full Length Mirrors
Every bedroom needs a full length mirror, whether it is on the back of a door or featured as a cheval mirror on a stand. There is nothing more disconcerting than having to stand on the bed or on a step stool to try to get a full picture of oneself. Plan on this, it will be a real convenience. It will also save you the embarrassment of wearing mismatched shoes and socks, an occasional gaff caused by dressing in the dark without a full length mirror!
Mirrors as Illusion
Mirrors are not the only way to make a room appear larger and are not always the best idea. Often using a light color on an accent wall will make the wall visually recede, or placing a well chosen piece of artwork with a distant vista or far off view will do the trick as well. Certainly some of you may recall the popular murals of years past including a lifesize floor to ceiling forest or beach scene. Both gave the illusion of the space going on indefinitely.