upon reflection

Is it creepy that I am as fascinated by the furniture in the 1981 film, Mommie Dearest, as everyone else is in the “no-more-wire-hangers scene?” Hate to say it, but no matter how many hideous acts Joan Crawford could be accused of, bad decorating was not on the list.

Set-design illustration of Joan's dressing room in Mommie Dearest.

As with most Hollywood royalty at the time, Crawford had a passion for glitz and glamour, the hallmark of which was mirrored furniture—chests of drawers, nightstands, coffee tables, vanities…even ceiling tiles. (Rumor has it, the reflective look became SO popular–and so overused–in the 40’s and 50’s, that the trend virtually disappeared for a few decades. Guess people couldn’t look at it–or themselves–any more.

But mirrors are back in a big way, and I’m head of the fan club. With a bit of restraint, though. I’m not particularly interested in seeing an entire room done up in reflective surfaces (too much risk of looking like the Hall of Mirrors in a funhouse); but one striking piece that catches the light opens up a space dramatically. And interestingly, today’s “celebrities” seem just as enamoured of the look as good-old Joan….

Tori Spelling's livingroom reflects the mirrored trend.

Cosmetic heiress Aerin Lauder's brilliant powder room.


The cheapest catalog, but not the cheapest price: Borghese Chest; $1,099, www.homedecoratorscollection.com

Same Borghese Chest; only $799 at www.zgallerie.com

A clear alternative: Hayworth 4-Drawer Chest; $549.95 at www.pier1.com

On a side note, the Parson table; $349 at www.westelm.com

...or a tiny table that mimics the look; $76.49 at www.target.com

As for me, I’m now on the hunt for a mirrored coffee table for my  livingroom. Something sleek, something square…something affordable, of course. Please drop me a note at hillarythebargainhunter@gmail.com if you find that perfect pick!

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