Sandblasting glass is fun and easy! It's a great way to repurpose old bottles to use around the house.
- Clean and dry glass bottles, vases, or drinking glasses
- Masking tape (a variety of widths)
- Exacto knife
- Cutting board
- Straight edge
- Your design!
Step 1: Setting Up Your Design
1) Sketch or print out your design to use as a visual template. This helps when you're masking tape onto the bottle. You can also create the design as you go. Both methods are great as there are no wrong answers when it comes to design!
2) The straight-edge comes in handy when you're looking to place an leveled line across the bottle. Use the exacto knife to precisely cut tape lengths to meet your design's needs.
Step 2: Locked and Loaded
3) Ensure that the tape is securely adhered to the bottle by pressing down own it.
*Please note: the taped areas will NOT be sandblasted and will have the transparent look of the original bottle when you're done. It's important to think about this as you're laying down the foundation of your design. All the exposed glass will be frosted by the sand.
Step 3: Blast off!
4) When it comes to sandblasting, there's a speed/feed finesse. The machine pictured above is controlled by a foot pedal. Similar to a gas pedal, the harder you push, the faster the sand is propelled out of the sand gun inside the machine.
Tightly gripping your object in one hand, activate the gun by pressing your foot down on the foot pedal. Before pointing it at your object, try to stabilize it so there's a steady stream of sand coming out.
Point the gun at your object, and evenly stroke it-- being mindful that the beads of sand are stripping away layers of glass.
I personally like to slowly take off the layers, as it's possible to take off too much too fast. Take breaks to rest your arm and don't forget to take your object out periodically to visually check on your process/assess what you'd like to do next.
Step 4: Peel, Wash and Use!
5) Peel off the tape, wash the bottle, and you're ready to use!
These bottles make great personalized gifts. I've made water decanters, water bottles, olive oil bottles, accessory containers, beer carboys, and bottles for home brewers-- the possibilities are truly endless!