DIY: Modern Glass Etching
Glass etching is really in right now. Crafters everywhere are putting on their rubber gloves and protective eye wear and getting after it. I tend to jump on the craft fad train every time. Mostly because I want to see what is so darn cool about the current “in” project.
If you have ever even glanced at a computer screen with Pinterest, you have no doubt seen a glass etching pin or two. Most of what I have seen has been on glasses or jars and that’s all good and well, but I had a very specific need to be filled. Since that need was made of glass – well, two birds meet one stone.
You may have guessed from the image above that I needed a butter dish. Never in my life had I actually seen one in use. At some point since my last visit my parents have acquired one, filled it with butter and set it on the counter. I am convinced they did this just to make me jealous. Our butter is better than your butter. I mean it was always perfectly room temperature and so easy to slather onto bread. That is an awesome, awesome thing.
So, do you want to etch text onto a butter dish or other item made of glass? Guess what… It’s crazy easy. You will need:
- Glass Item(s)
- Shelf Lining Paper/Contact Paper (pattern or not doesn’t matter) Recommended -OR- Self Laminating Sheets
- X-Acto Knife & Cutting Mat
- Printed Text (or graphic)
- Spray Adhesive
- Glass Etch (I used Armour Etch sold at hobby stores near mosaics and stained glass)
- Protective Gloves & Eyewear
- Junk Bristled Paint Brush
- Hot Running Water
Step 1: Take your printed words and place on your glass item. You want to make sure that you are happy with the size of the text in relation to the item.
Step 2: Cut out a piece of your contact paper or laminating sheet slightly larger than your text. Attach your word using spray adhesive. Allow a moment or two to dry .
Step 3: Use your X-acto knife to carefully cut your letters out. Be sure to save the inner parts of your letters. For example, I kept the circles inside of the “b” and “a” in buttah.
Step 4: Apply your contact paper directly onto the glass. If you’re working with contact paper, you can pick it up and move it around a couple of times until you are happy with the placement. If you are using laminating sheets do your best to get the placement right the first time. More than likely it will tear if you try to move and you’ll need to start again. I really, really recommend using contact paper instead!
Step 5: Put on your protective gear (seriously this stuff is acid and it lists death as a possibility from accidental contact) and take out a brush that has seen better days. Go ahead and go around your stencil again just to make sure that there are no air bubbles or any place for the acid to get into and ruin your clean lines.
Stir up your glass etch and slather it on each letter. Take care to clean off any that may land on other areas of your class, or they will also etch.
Allow to sit up to 30 minutes away from kids and pets. Place in your sink with hot water flowing and allow the water to wash away the acid. Use your paint brush if necessary to help remove. When you are satisfied that the acid is gone, carefully remove the contact paper. Wash your item and it’s ready to use!
Need a little help with the computer side of getting your text ready? If you have a computer with Microsoft Word, follow the steps below:
Step 1: Start Microsoft Word and open a new document. Type in the words you want to appear. If you are purposefully misspelling your word, as in buttah instead of butter, feel free to ignore the red squiggly misspell line underneath.
Step 2: Go through your font options until you find one you are happy with for your project. Also, think about how easy or difficult it will be to cut out with an X-acto knife. Really ornate fonts, while pretty, will be a total bear to cut out nicely. I chose abeat by Kai – an awesome and free for personal use font.
Step 3: Using the font size, enlarge until adequate. I measured my butter dish and found that 4.25 inches would be the ideal length. I used the ruler overhead the Word document to measure that length.
Step 4: Save your document if you might be using this stencil again. Print document for immediate use.