It’s been a while, I know. But now the semester is over and I can get back to full time crafting and baking 🙂 I haven’t done a craft in a long time; I’ve been primarily focusing on recipes lately, so I thought I would switch it up a little bit and learn how to do a new craft. Pinterest told me that it was very easy to learn how to etch glass, and that the results are absolutely fabulous. So, that’s the task that I took on yesterday.
The pinner said that all you need is etching cream, rubber gloves and a piece of glass that you want to work with. Well, that’s essentially true, but you also need a few other things. Here’s the real list:
1. A well ventilated area- I chose to do this outside in my backyard
2. Drop cloth- I just used newspaper, but I don’t know if that’s a good enough substitute- luckily I was very careful and didn’t find out the hard way
3. Etching cream- the Michael’s near me doesn’t carry etching cream, so I had to go to AC Moore. Not an actual problem, but I just like Michael’s better. Couldn’t even tell ya why because apparently AC Moore has more stuff. I used Armour Etch, which costs about $9.00, give or take. THIS STUFF IS LITERALLY ACID. Like, for real, that’s what it is. That’s why you need:
4. Rubber gloves- BECAUSE THE STUFF IS ACID. Also why I chose to do the project outside, and why you need a well-ventilated area. They also suggest safety eye wear. I wear glasses so I didn’t bother, especially since I was in a well ventilated area. However, depending on how dangerously you like to live, you could wear safety glasses as well.
5. A paintbrush- or Popsicle stick. Some say that a Popsicle stick works better, but I used a paintbrush and didn’t have a problem.
6. Painter’s tape- as a stencil
7. X-acto Knife- to cut out the design you want to use
8. Glass cleaner- because if the glass is dirty the cream won’t work as well
Now, just as a disclaimer, I’m cheating a little bit here because I actually bought a glass-etching kit, but from reading blog posts and from the experience I had, I still know what I’m talking about, don’t you worry. I decided to do this because every time I see plain glass somewhere I want to buy it and paint it to look like the sea glass thing that I showed you. Then, I realized that I didn’t have a purpose for something like that, so I made it a goal to find something else to do with glass.
First, spread out your drop cloth in your well ventilated area. Then, clean your glass. Make sure there are no fingerprints, etc. on it before you begin. Now, place your tape where you want the design to go, and use the X-acto knife to draw your design. I’ll show you mine, although mine is WAY more intricate than I could actually do with my own hands, because like I said, I had a kit. They gave me the stencils already made. This’ll be the hard part for you
See, I could never draw that, never mind draw it with a knife.
Anyway, the white part is going to be the part where your design shows up, and the rest of the tape is there to make sure that no etching cream gets in the area around the design. Now, PUT ON YOUR RUBBER GLOVES because once your design is done, it’s time to do the etching.
Shake the bottle well. I know it says that on the directions, but just in case you don’t read directions, shake the bottle 🙂 Now, take your paintbrush, and get a glob of it on the brush. Spread it generously on top of the white part of the design, thick enough so that you can’t see the design underneath it anymore. Be careful not to get any outside of where the tape is, because once it’s there, its permanent. While it’s sitting there, it’s like literally burning into the glass.
I wish I had a picture of that to show you, but I got so caught up in the anxiety of dealing with such a permanent thing that could burn me that I didn’t really think to. Sorry 😦 Leave the cream on for one minute. That’s what the instructions said to do, but you can leave it on for a little bit longer so it doesn’t come out fainter than you want it to. After the time is up, take it to a STAINLESS STEEL SINK to wash all the cream off. Keep your gloves on while you do this, you still can’t touch it even when you’re rinsing it off. And it should be a stainless steel sink because the cream can wear down some other kinds of sinks like porcelain, etc.
Once all of the cream has washed off, don’t panic if it looks a little light. Once you dry it and give it a minute to do whatever it does, it’ll get darker, don’t worry. Your finished result should look a little something like this, and it’ll be beautiful 🙂
I have a cool little update for you: This candle holder is available for sale on my Etsy store! Take a look: https://www.etsy.com/listing/190612022/etched-glass-candle-holder-tea-light?ref=shop_home_active_1