How To Do Glass Etching
After I got my Cricut Maker at a Black Friday sale, I dove in and did every project this wonder machine would do. Then I see glass etching projects. How did they do that?! I was on a mission to do another project! What to do first? I want to start small, so I found a glass piece at a thrift store to practice on.
It turned out perfect and was super easy to do!
Eliminate Your Fears And Doubts
Armour Etch is your friend. Use it carefully! Always wear protective gloves and glasses and use in a well ventilated area. It will etch whatever it touches almost immediately. Found that out the hard way! Pictures to follow below. Hopefully I can keep you from making the same mistakes I did along the way.
After my trial project turned out so well, I was ready to take on a bigger project. I found a nice 12 x 12″ solid wooden frame at the thrift store. I love to refurbish them and use them for a lot of my projects. Just clean them up, sand if needed and paint a fresh coat or two of your favorite color paint and your set. This frame cost $1.
Time to Apply the Etching Cream
Color the Etching
Tests For Best Results
Determined to do this with a positive outcome, I cut my stencil carefully centering it on my 3″ square. This way I can just put it directly on the glass without worrying about centering the image. ALWAYS clean your surface before applying Armour Etch or vinyl. It’s an easy step that will save you heartache in the long run, I promise! For this project, I cleaned it with glass cleaner then wiped with alcohol just to be sure there is no residue left on the surface.
It still had places that it didn’t take. I’m wondering if it’s the glass itself that is the problem. More trials to come but I’ll share the coloring process anyway even if the this etching isn’t perfect.
Trying to save my product as much as possible, I put disposable gloves on and smeared the smallest, smidge amount of Rub n Buff on the tip of my finger and carefully rub the etched star. When thoroughly coated, I wiped the excess off with a paper towel. Using the glove was a much better way to apply. After covering the etched area, wipe the excess off with a paper towel. It will buff right off. This guys turned out good enough to go to my Etsy Shop.
I found the best way to apply the color was a small area at a time then quickly rub the excess off before it dries. This makes cleaning easier. The Rub n Buff is permanent on the etching. I sprayed it with window cleaner and rubbed vigorously and nothing came off, hand washing and dishwasher haven’t budged it either. Hot water and a scrub brush will remove it with a little elbow grease.
What About Colored Glass?
Finally, I wondered how it would do on colored glass. At first, I didn’t think it etched very good and was going to scrap the experiment. After applying the Rub n Buff to the Home Sweet Home picture, I decided why not! Wow was I surprised! The color took on all the letters and just makes it pop off the bowl. Glad I went ahead tried it, Unfortunately, the etching cream seeped a little under the ‘u’ and the coloring makes it very obvious. Hence the importance of extra care that the stencil is tightly sealed against your item.
Etch Mirrors Too!
In addition to all glass projects, Amour Etch will work wonderfully on mirrors. My experiment on a mirror trivet turned out great. I applied it the same as on glass and left it 15 minutes then rinsed. As a result, it etched as well as on glass. It can be used as a plant trivet, but I put a primitive lantern on it.
Let’s Wrap This Up
Don’t be afraid! Don’t have doubts! You can do this! Just gather your supplies and go for it! You will not regret it. Start making things for yourself, family and friends. Nothing better than a handmade gift from the heart.
Thoughts or questions? Have you done any glass etching? We would love for you to share your projects with us below.