Glass Etched Glasses





Introduction: Glass Etched Glasses

For Christmas this year, I am etching different beverage glasses for my family. I have coffee mugs, beer glasses, and wine glasses. Here are the general directions and how-to to make your very own personalized glasses.

Step 1: Materials

You will need:

-Clean glasses
-Glass Etching
-Masking Tape
-Glass Etching Stencils
-Paper Towels
-Scissors, Exacto, or other cutting devices

Step 2: Perpare Your Glass

Make sure that your glass is clean and you have a good clean surface with good lighting.

Decide on your design. You may want to sketch it out on paper first. For this pattern, I made one glass, measured the distance between stripes on a paper and used that as my template for future glasses.

Step 3: Mark Your Pattern

Use masking tape or stencils to mark where you want to be etched. Make sure you use your nails or a popsicle stick to press the edges down securely onto the glass.

Step 4: Apply Etching Solution

With a brush, heavily apply the glass etching solution to the area you want to be etched. Make sure that you get the solution in every nook and corner of your pattern. Also, make sure that you cannot see the glass beneath the solution to ensure maximum coverage.

Step 5: Wait

Let the etching solution work on the glass for 2 minutes.

Step 6: Wash the Glass

After the two minutes, wash the solution off of the glass. Remove the tape and wipe the glass clean. If your tape leaves residue, wash the glass again with soap or Goo Be Gone to clean it off.

Step 7: Continue Until Finished

Once you finished etching the first part, continue this process until the whole thing is done.

Step 8: Finished!

After the etching is done, make sure to wash your glass again with soap and water. Then enjoy!

Here are some other pictures of different glasses that I have done for inspiration.

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72 Discussions


2 years ago

I need help! I have tried TWICE following the directions I have found online for etching glass and whether I leave the cream on for a few minutes or overnight it still washes completely off! What is going wrong!

I etched 4 pilsner glasses. Unless you hold the glasses up at an angle or up to light, you can't really see the etchings. Even putting something in the glasses doesn't help. However, it is well etched. any ideas?

1 reply

Hi! Something like that happened to me recently. I etched some beer glasses and they appeared fine, but when my visitors used the glasses and poured some beer on them the design couldn't be seen. Is this normal? What can I do to avoid this?

Dear friends: I have an idea for a project, but I would need to add color to the etching cream. Any ideas on the subject? Is it even possible?


3 replies

Any particular kind of dye?

Use special glass paint from Americana.

Does anyone know how to make safe etching solution?

Armour etch recommends leaving cream on for only 60 seconds to keep stencil lines sharp. I use vinyl wall stickers to use as my stencil...I fine the adhesive works great and have not seen any issues with my edges....however have not seen much of a difference in the etch quality by letting it sit longer.

Hope this helps!

I've done a lot of sandblast work in the past and love it's deep etching, but I'm in an apartment now and noise is a consideration. Does longer exposure lead to any deeper etching or will it all be the same as the 2 to 5 minute limit?

1 reply

Silly question for all of you folks. 

The Armour glass etching cream and stencils I have specify letting the cream sit on the glass for only 1 minute...not 2 minutes. 

Anyone know why? 

Perhaps after 1 minute the cream will starting eating through the stencil?

I know after only 1 minute (which is all I've tried) the etching is OK...but not all that deep or opaque. 


2 replies

I think the best bet is to go to a craft store like Michael's, Jo-Ann's, or A.C. Moore, when they offer 40-60% off coupons. Just got myself some Armour-Etch recently that way: 22 oz. for $18.50 with the 50% off coupon. Though Einarjon says that a 10 oz. bottle will do hundreds/thousands of glasses, so I guess I went overboard...Oh well, a lifetime of glass-etching for me, then! (Also just got a 60% coupon at a local craft store and got me some otherwise too expensive gesso--previously just would put layers of paint to try and make a suitable surface. Rollin' with the big kids now!)

you are paying WAY too much for you etching cream. JoAnn's has it for much less as do many other online sources, but strangely enough, the cheapest I found was on Overstock. the 10oz bottle is $14.99, and they also carry a 2.5oz bottle *which is about all you need if you're only doing a few glasses or ornaments or, my favorite mirrors* which goes for $6.29. the huuuge 22oz bottle is $25.03. anything you buy from Overstock ships for $2.95, no matter how big or small and they quite often have free shipping or $1 shipping events. i also know that some of the larger walmarts carry it. ...and as mentioned, craft stores. ...but, if you have the time to wait for shipping, online is the cheapest way to go. ....i also found a "faux etching" kit where it's more like frosting than etching, same beautiful work, dishwasher, microwave and oven safe but without the skin eating chemicals. :)

Note that you can do hundreds (or thousands) of glasses with a 10oz bottle. The cream doesn't "wear out" so it can be scooped up and used again and again.

Beautiful glasses! Has anyone considered doing this with a Dremel tool? I'd prefer to do this without the harsh chemicals, but I'm afraid a Dremel might be a harsh tool!