You can’t put a price on the family jewels, but you can treat your guy to a daily viewing.

My mom, like many women, always strives to make things look pretty. Throughout my childhood, this included peppering a cornucopia of decorative accessories around the house, much of it changed out regularly to reflect whatever season, holiday or occasion she wanted our home to decoratively celebrate on any given day.

I didn’t have much interest in all that at the time. I was one of those kids who viewed decorating the Christmas tree as a chore. I wasn’t a Scrooge; I just had better things to do. But there is one  decor-related memory that really sticks out. (That cheeky little pun will make sense in a minute.)

A Powder Room with a View
One afternoon when I was a freshman in high school, my good friend and algebra study partner Scott came out of our downstairs powder room visibly stifling a giggle. When I asked him what was so funny, he wouldn’t answer until my mother, who had been in the kitchen, finally went upstairs.

“Did you ever notice the mirror your mom hung right above the potpourri dish on the toilet tank?” I had not. “Well,” he said sheepishly then paused. “Let’s just say, it is a very interesting placement.” Realizing I didn’t get it, he glanced down pointedly at the zipper region of his jeans. After a few seconds, my cheeks began to burn as I understood what he was trying to say. We went into the half bath to take a peek at the mirror, laughed like the teenagers we were, then went back to Algebra. I never really thought about it much after that.

Fast forward 30 years, now I feel like maybe my mom was onto something there. Because I cannot think of a man who would not appreciate the perfect placement of that mirror. Talk about a hostess who thinks of everything! For the women, a huge mirror above the sink for primping. For the men, an unexpected private viewing of their most prized possession.

For the Man who has Everything…
I always knew my mom had a knack for decorating, but now I think she might have stumbled upon a simply brilliant idea. I’m calling it The Junk Mirror: a well-hung loo mirror that can be a daily pick-me-up for your man each morning, or a sneaky, spot-on surprise for male dinner guests.

It’s a great gift idea, not only because it’s clever and can provide years of viewing pleasure, but also because it can be quick, very inexpensive…or even free!

Mirror, Mirror Off the Wall
If you’re like me, you probably have a little stash of framed art and mirrors tucked away in a closet, pieces you’ve been meaning to hang but haven’t. Perfect! Just grab a mirror and prop it up over the toilet tank or get a hammer and hang it up on the wall above the toilet. Voila!

Easy DIY Mirror
If you don’t happen to have an extra mirror lying around, but you do have a good sized framed photo or painting you aren’t crazy about, you can transform it yourself!

You will need:

  • A frame with glass front (Ideally, 18 inches across. But anything 15 – 20 inches should work)
  • Painters tape
  • 1 can Mirror or Looking Glass spray paint (Rustoleum and Krylon have good options)


Three easy steps…

  1. Remove photo or painting from frame, then clean and dry the glass
  2. Use painters tape to cover the frame (or remove the glass from the frame)
  3. Place the frame/glass on newspaper or tarp, and spray the mirror paint in thin layers


And that’s it! Once the glass is dry (follow instructions on can for details on technique and drying time), you can remove the painters tape and hang the mirror above the potty or just prop it up on top.

A few pointers…

  • When spraying mirror paint, consider stopping before it’s perfect. Imperfections can create an antiqued look, which adds interest.
  • Consider using a round or oval frame or mirror for variety. Also: porthole mirrors!
  • Using a fish eye (convex) mirror is a fun twist, as it is a wee bit distorting, in a good way.
  • If you can’t find a reasonably priced fish eye mirror, look for a convex security mirror and just paint the rim or frame to match your bathroom decor.
  • Another DIY option: repurpose a large round wall clock. If the lens is domed, you’ll get a bit of the fish eye effect.

Personal considerations…

  • If the family jewels are naturally sizable, use a flawless mirror to reflect their glory.
  • If not, maybe look for a magnifying mirror??
  • Want a more subtle version for guests? Use mirror spray on glass for a hazy or antiqued look.