There's something so captivating about infinity mirrors. Maybe they just look cool or maybe they just remind me of being a kid and looking down the shelves in the produce aisle. Either way, dad and I really enjoyed making this lamp. As I am sure you're all aware of, infinity mirrors are nothing new, however, we believe that there are plenty of little twists on this old-time favorite to make it one of a kind!
This video is where we found our inspiration: https://youtu.be/OasbgnLOuPI
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.
Step 1: Materials
-Four 2" by 10" Boards
-Four 2" by 6" Boards
-Remote Led Strips: https://amzn.to/2EmFm8F
-Remote Light Bulb: https://amzn.to/2XiGqBN
-12" Drawer Glides: https://amzn.to/2XhhT00
-12" Plexiglass: https://amzn.to/2XhhT00
-Hand Router: https://amzn.to/2XhhT00
-Chisel Set: https://amzn.to/2GfGBb4
-Scroll Saw: https://amzn.to/2WzGvRl
-Table Router: https://amzn.to/2skagI2
-Belt Sander: https://amzn.to/2LYI7z6
-Chop Saw: https://amzn.to/2Ca5xNE
-Woodburning Kit: https://amzn.to/2LYCJfm
-Wood Glue: https://amzn.to/2SJXzSj
-1 Foot Quick Grip Clamps: https://amzn.to/2VO2W54
-Solar Film: https://amzn.to/2H3OQr5
-Exacto Knife: https://amzn.to/2VEgv70
Step 2: Making Your Sides
Probably the hardest part of this build, making the sides to your infinity cage will require some practice with getting the angles right. For the tops and bottoms of your sides, you'll need to cut them at 16 degrees from 90. These will also need to be offset so that when your piece is standing upright, the top will still be level.
Once you have all 6 side's tops and bottoms cut these angles, then you will have to decide how steep of an angle to put on the long edge of the boards. We chose to have our blade angles 28 degrees from 90 and our Miter angle to be 11 degrees from 90. This is why it would be better to practice on some lower quality boards before you cut your main pieces. These angles can be tricky, so just make sure you practice before you start.
Step 3: Mirror Framing
As with most mirrors, you'll need to cut out some recesses in your side panels. Depending on the shape of your desired mirrors, trace out the rough size of your mirrors on the back of your panels and then cut them out with a scroll saw. Make sure you leave at least 3/4" to a 1/2" on the sides of your panels so that you can router in an additional recess for your mirrors to sit in.
Step 4: Cutting Your Mirrors
Instead of using actual glass one-way mirrors, we chose to use plexiglass instead because of the ease with which you can cut it. Just lay your plexiglass over the top of your recesses, trace them out with a marker, and then cut them out on a bandsaw.
Another cool thing about plexiglass is that you can sand it like wood to really get it shaved down to the right dimensions.
Step 5: Gluing the Cage
There's really no easy way to glue all of your sides together. Just grab some glue, around 15 clamps, and go at it!
Step 6: Top Platform
For the platform for your light bulb, cut one of your 2" by 6"s into three separate pieces that are large enough to cover the top part of your cage. Then glue them all together and let them dry. Afterwards, lay your cage with the widest end down on your board and trace around the inside of it with a permanent marker. Then cut around this line with a bandsaw so that you are left with a hexagonal board that contains a 1" overhang all the way around your cage.
This next part is completely optional, but if you wish to add some more layers to your infinity cage, then feel free to trace out some designs on the top of your board and cut them out on a scroll saw. We matched up our designs with our side panels.
Then, you'll need to chisel a small hole in the top for your electrical wire.
Step 7: Pedestal Construction
Since our pedestal was going to have a secret compartment in it, we made ours a little bit taller than a normal base would need to be. The perimeter of our box was made to the exact width of the widest part of our top platform.
But if you do want to have a secret compartment in your own lamp, try and leave a space of about 5" by 12" for your drawer to rest in.
Step 8: Drawer Construction
The only thing special about this drawer is in the way that the front of the drawer is connected to the sides and how it looks from the outside. We attached the front of this drawer with angled screws from the sides of the drawer. For the outside, we then drilled four holes in the front of the drawer and placed some ground off screws in them to give it the appearance that the board was actually attached to the rest of the box.
Step 9: Attaching the Reflective Film
This step is pretty simple. All you have to do is trace out your reflective film to the size of the plexiglass that you cut out earlier and attach it to your glass. Some films say to spray water on your glass before you attach the film, but we found that just cleaning the glass with some Windex and then attaching it worked just fine.
Once your film is placed on your pieces, then fasten your mirrors into their recesses with either some Goop or Silicone.
Step 10: Platform Mirror
If you decided to make several infinity mirrors for your top piece, then you'll have to repeat the process of crafting your plexiglass mirrors. The process is basically the same except for the fact that you can cut one large hexagonal piece of plexiglass instead of several individual ones. If you choose to use this method, then you'll also have to router out a section for this piece as well.
Step 11: Electrical
When you're running your electrical wires, you'll need two holes in the top of your bottom box and two in the back of your bottom box. These holes will be for both your LEDs and light bulb. Make sure that when you're running the LEDs around the inside of your cage that you are sticking them to the mirrors themselves and not the wood. Otherwise, the wood might possibly flake off over time taking the lights with them.
Take it from us, you don't want to go back later and stick them all in again!
Step 12: Lampshade Customization
The only reason we spray painted this lampshade is because it was the only one available to us, that actually fit our lamp. Plus my mom really hated it.......
All we did to customize it was tack on some small sea creatures to the frame and then spray painted around it. Make sure that when you're spraying it, that you come at the shapes from a parallel angle so that the paint doesn't get under the animals.
Step 13: Woodburning (Optional)
This step can really be done at any time and is completely optional.
However, one thing I discovered on this project was that you can actually Woodburn right through the paper. I was a little nervous about trying this technique mainly because I didn't want the paper to catch on fire. But as it turns out, my wood burner was only hot enough to smolder the paper instead of turning it into a pile of ash.