I remember a few years ago I got on a crafting kick and one of the things that I bought was etching cream. I was going to make lots of beautiful etched glass pieces. Then I tried out the etching cream on my glass jar and no dice. The cream didn’t make one iota of an imprint and the glass stayed perfectly smooth. Needless to say, I quit for a few years.
But, I got back on the bandwagon and now I am loving the process of etching glass. The process is so simple, so I’m not sure how I couldn’t figure it out back in the day…let’s chalk it up to being blonde. Anyways, let’s talk about how to etch glass without a Cricut.
Do I have something against Cricut? Absolutely not! I just don’t own one at the moment. I would LOVE to own one. But since I don’t have a Cricut, I have to figure out how to etch my designs into glass without the benefits of a Cricut. That was easily solved with one visit to my favorite store, Hobby Lobby.
The process of etching glass is super simple and you can create adorable gifts. Have an unused glass sitting around? Etch a design for your best friend or personalize it for your mom. During the summertime, visit garage sales. The amount of glassware that is sold for just pennies is astounding. Pick up some pieces and take them home and etch them. Cheap, easy, and cute DIY gifts!
Supplies Needed to Etch Glass:
- Armour Etch Etching cream
- Painter’s tape
- Glass Jar
- Rubber/plastic gloves
- Rubbing Alcohol
- Sponge brush
How to etch glass:
First, clean your jar with rubbing alcohol. This helps to remove any dust that may remain on the glass and get it super-duper clean. You’ll notice that I am re-using an old pasta sauce jar. I like that I can reuse the jars instead of throwing them away.
Next, put a strip of painter’s tape across the top of your jar to help create a straight line for where you will be placing your stencils.
Then, put your stencil on. I decided to make a jar for my husband, Luis, so I used the letters to spell his name. I put the stencils straight up and down, but you can also do across your glass.
The stencils that I used are specifically for etching glass. The stencils are self-adhesive and re-useable, so they stick to the glass by themselves and I can reuse them again for other projects.
Put painter’s tape around the entire design. This keeps the etching cream from etching where it shouldn’t.
Put on your plastic gloves. Apply the etching cream over the design using the sponge brush. Please note that less is not more. There should be plenty of cream on top of the design.
I leave the cream on for five minutes. The directions say to leave on for one minute, but that isn’t nearly enough time. If you prefer to leave the cream on for longer than 5 minutes, then there’s no harm in that.
The secret is to smoosh the cream around again at the 2:30 minute mark. This makes sure that the cream is adequately spread around in case a spot was missed.
Wash the cream off the design using cold water. Keep your gloves on for this. Also, if you have a ceramic sink, use a different container to wash the cream off in. The etching cream can harm a ceramic sink. While washing the cream off, you may notice that you can’t see the design. This is normal. Once the glass is dried, you will see the design.
Lastly, dry the glass off. Take off the stencils and tape. Ta-Dah! You should have a beautifully etched glass.
I wanted to make a design around the letters, just a simple outlined box. So, once the jar was dry, I taped over the letters to protect the design and outlined a box around the letters.
Next, I put more etching cream on to create the box and waited five more minutes.
After five minutes, I washed the jar under water, took off the tape, and revealed my design. Simple and easy!
Conclusion on How to Etch Glass:
The benefit that I received from this project is creating a glass specifically for my hubby. Now he can’t steal mine :). Etching glass is a very simple process, taking about 10 minutes at the most to complete. Now you know how to etch glass without a Cricut. What will you create?