Etched Glass Projects

etched glass projects

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I made an etched glass vase for a friend’s wedding recently (and of course one for me) after seeing this idea from Martha Stewart. I eventually want to label some canisters by etching the glass and am on the lookout for some inexpensive glass jars.

You can etch anything that is glass with this Armor Etch cream and it is so easy to use. You will need the following:


1. Armor Etch (found at craft stores); I bought mine with a 40% off coupon (of course) at Roberts since it is fairly expensive (about $7 full price).
2. Contact Paper (housewares department at Wal-Mart aka shelf liner or Laminating Sheets
3. Exact-o knife (razor blade)
4. tape
5. template or stencil (I printed a letter from my word program as my template)
6. paint brush

First start by making sure your glass surface is clean. Then cut out a piece of contact paper that is bigger than your stencil. You will want the contact paper to cover quite a bit of your glass surface to protect the glass from coming in contact with the cream where you don’t want it. Carefully peel the backing off of the contact paper and stick it onto the glass. Do this very carefully so that there are no bubbles or creases in the contact paper. You may need to rub some of the smaller bubbles out with your fingers.


Now that the contact paper is on your glass, take your stencil and center it. Tape it down to keep it in place. Take your Exact-o knife and carefully cut out your stencil. You will have to push harder to make sure it cuts through the paper layer and the contact paper.


Remove the contact paper where you want your glass to be etched (in this case it was the letter H).


Paint the etch cream over the glass you would like etched (the letter H). I followed the directions on the bottle the first time but had to redo it to get the effect I wanted. So if you want your etching to turn out like mine did, I left the cream on for about 10 minutes.

I have also found that you can reuse the etching cream, so when the time is up, I scrape it back into the bottle. I then reapplied some more etching cream and left it on for another 5 minutes.

When you are finished with the second application, save the excess cream. Then leaving the contact paper on your vase, rinse off the cream with water. You will want to be careful where you rinse your cream off. The package cautions you from using porcelain sinks since the cream may damage the surface. I rinsed mine off outside in the hose over the grass. Now that it is clean, peel away the contact paper.

etched glass projects 1

I also etched one of my Pyrex 9×13 pans so that when I take dinner to my neighbors or other families in my church group, they know who the pan belongs to. These would be great gifts to give someone, don’t you think? To be able to read the name while looking into the pan, you need to tape the name onto the bottom of the pan so that it reads backwards. After it is taped, turn the pan right side up and see if you have taped it on so you can read the name correctly.

etched glass projects 2

I think the next thing I will be etching is one of the glass tile pendants, or my pumpkin pie dish for next Thanksgiving. The possibilities are endless.

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  1. Charlotte says

    OMG!! i was just talking with my hubby about etching a glass window that looks out onto a neighbors shed! (sooo ugly!) we love the light, but hate the view…thanks for the tutorial…I will be sure to have a casserole dish out & ready to do at the same time! lol

  2. Glenda says

    this is such a great project…can't wait to try it. I can see doing some items for our church bazaar next fall.

  3. In Debt Dee says

    Such a cute & inexpensive idea for a wedding gift!! Thank you for the great instructions!

  4. Heidi says

    i love the etched glass items you made. have you cooked in your pyrex yet since etching? just wondering how the etching holds up to the oven.

  5. Amy says

    Heidi–Great question. I had made one of these before with our church group. We had them sandblasted as a group to have the names etched in them. I used it for a couple of years with absolutely no change or problems in the oven. The only problem it had was staying in my slippery, soapy fingers one night. It landed in the sink and broke. So I had to make me a new one.

  6. Terra says

    That is amazing! I've got to try that. This is such a good idea for bridal showers or gifts. Thanks so much for posting this!!!

  7. says

    I see that this post is a couple of years old, but THANK YOU for posting it! Your instructions are much more clear than others I’ve seen. I will be trying this later today. :)

  8. says

    your instructions were so beautifully written. i love to make things and sometimes explaining them doesn’t sound as eloquent as yours. thank you. i will try this tomorrow on the wine bottles i just learned to break with acetone!

  9. Devon says

    Hey Amy, quick question. Does the etching wear off or wash off or is it permanent? Thanks! I absolutely love this idea!

  10. Connie Perkins says

    Thanks for re-posting this idea! Being in a YSA Bishopric, we are invited to several weddings (6 just this month). This would be a beautiful gift with a reasonable cost. I will try it this weekend.

  11. Jackie says

    Can you reuse the cut out contact paper? I have a few vases I want to make with the exact same pattern but I don’t want to have to cut out the same pattern multiple times…


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