How to Upcycle Glass with Etching

This etching project turned out to be one of the easiest and most satisfying upcycles I’ve ever done. The combination of the etched glass as a background and the gold stenciled letters turned out to be a delightful surprise.

And beter yet, the glasses were free. They came in one of those promotional Christmas packages that you sometimes find at the liquor store. The store owner told us he really doesn’t like them because the packaging takes up so much space on his shelf, but doesn’t make him any more money. So, I happily took two packages of Johnny Walker (with four glasses) off his hands.

I wasn’t sure the etching cream would cover over the branded etching on the glasses, but it worked like a charm. Here are the three simple steps to these cute, one-of-a-kind glasses:

etching glass

Stencils for the Win

Step One: I cut a stencil out of contact paper just slightly larger than the Johnny Walker logo on the glasses. I like to usethe blue contact paper on glass rather than the clear.

Step Two: I applied the etching cream as per the instructions. [Armour Etch Glass Etching Cream is available on Amazon] The cream only needs to stay on for five minutes. The first coat didn’t completely cover the logo, so I did a second coat for another five minutes and it worked beautifully.

etching cream

Wimsy is My Middle Name

Step Three: After rinsing and letting the etched glass dry completely, I stenciled the letters. I used a stencil I found on Amazon from Plaid Enterprises. I love their designs. They are one of the few companies that have mid-century themed stencils. These particular letters fit my wimsical theme…

The letters have a personal meaning…my maiden name was Holt, and my married namWe is Highland. When hubbie and I got engaged, my dad was an electrician at the Tampa Tribune. My brother was engaged to my husband’s sister…yes, it’s legal, lol. Dad had the paper publish a small blurb about “The Hi-Ho Connection.”

I used Martha Stewart’s gold liquid guilding craft paint. [Also available on Amazon.] I didn’t want the letters to be solid, but more like they were sponged on. I just dabbed the guilding paint on with the brush.

guilding paint and stencil

I am an etching fiend now! I’m eyeing my vinegar dispensers next. I use them for infused vinegars and it would be so cute to etch the herbs onto the glass.

As soon as the thrift stores open up, I’m lurking for glass containers that are begging to be etched and/or stenciled. The sky is the limit!

etched drinking glasses

This glass is the perfect size for my morning juice. It brings back wonderful memories every time I look at it. 🥰 Best of all, it was super easy.

Categories:   Mid Century Upcycling