Time Capsule: $10 Transom Window

Since I admire one of my favorite projects almost daily (except on those days I don’t open the curtains), and since my blogging skills have improved a leeeetle bit since the original post back in March of 2010, I thought I’d do a recap of the $10 “transom window” I made with dollar store supplies.

As much as this picture shows how impatient I was to get the project done (and how excited I was to post about it – let’s be honest!)….


It also really doesn’t do it justice.

The project first started when I moved my “Pottery Barn” drapes higher above the sliding glass door because they were too long for the rod.  But then I had a big gap on the wall between the top of the door and the rod, and I just had to find something to fill it.  Funny how projects snowball, isn’t it?

I initially thought I’d get some square medallions to put up there in a row, but then I got the idea to use mirrors to replicate a transom window. I thought I’d be buying cheap frames and mirrors, and doing the framing myself.

But the dollar store beat me to it! :-)


A whopping $5 later, and these puppies were in my hot little hands!

While I was there, I also happened to notice a votive holder with a vintage feel, with a little flash of a fake jewel in the middle and some fake filigree. The light bulb went on!

I sprung for $5 more. Got them home, and ripped them apart:

Gettin' creative with those dollar store votive holders

See where I’m going with this??


Next, I needed to paint the frames white in order to make it look as much like a window as possible (and since all our other window trim is white.)

The fact that I had 4 black mirrors and one brown one didn’t exactly help either… 

I got out the white trim paint and got to work. (I could be really sloppy because a razor blade works perfectly to get paint off of glass.)



Then I used some Gorilla glue for the medallions, spray painted the rod oil-rubbed-bronze and called it a day.

Before = boring



After = awesome! (and cheap = no guilt if I want to switch it out)


BUT WAIT – THERE’S MORE!  (infomercial style Smile)

We ended up painting the kitchen/dining room the next weekend, and it made such a huge difference.

Faux transom window

So here’s the current “after” for ya:

Faux transom window 2

To be fair, this picture includes several projects I’ve done since the original pictures, including painting the light fixture, refinishing the buffet, and doing the “faux tray ceiling.”

Everything is a work in progress Smile  Maybe next time I take a picture of this room, something else will have changed (yeah, probably.)

Thanks for stopping by!



  1. That was quite a light bulb that went on. That is seriously creative. I think they look great.
    Sorry your having one of those days. Tomorrow will be better for sure!

  2. Wow, I love this! You are so creative and it looks gorgeous.

  3. You are so creative, what a great idea. THe end result is fantastic and I can't wait to see what it looks like with the wall painted! xx

  4. You are so creative!! Love this project!!

    I hope you have a better day today. Having a craptastic day is never a good thing :(

  5. That is awesome! They really do look like windows. Seeing the design in a votive holder- that's genius!

  6. This looks so great!

    I'm visiting from Favorite Things Friday.

  7. I love that--so genius! Thanks for linking up!


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