Glass Etching

12 Jun

A close friend recently gave birth to her beautiful baby girl. She is a special girl, born with Downs syndrome, but an even more special blessing as she was a later in life gift.

I made a small gift basket to accompany the large gift she received.

I made strawberry malt cupcakes. I wrapped them in a pretty vintage picnic red and white fabric. I used my cricut and the indie cartridge to make little cupcake toppers in the form of strawberries.

I also etched two champagne flutes with the family’s initial and the date of their special present’s birth.

The process of etching is really simple. This was my 4th or 5th time etching.

I started with choosing the font and style. I went with the Sophisticated cartridge. I love their fancy fonts. I used the cartridge for the dates and embellishment.

I then used the Cricut Craft Room software to play with different designs. I decided on the initial on top, the embellishment below and the date below that. I welded the pieces together.

Next I printed out the design on vinyl. Since I cannot use the vinyl again, or the negative, I printed it on contact paper. This works just as well! I found in other cases, that if you cut out too close to the image, you can use vinyl electric tape to add to the edges. I realized after I started applying the vinyl that I left out a number in the date! Just peel off the glass and reprint!

I had to be careful with the size of the image as the champagne flutes are narrow and I did not want to warp the image by applying. I applied the vinyl to the glass, starting in the center of the image and then used my plastic scraper to smooth out the image, working outwards. It is helpful to do this in bright light and facing the underside of the image. This helps see any bubbles or problems. It is very important not to have any creases or bubbles.

This is what it looks like after I applying and smoothed the vinyl. I found it difficult to take an image and still get all of the details. I am looking online to see how others remedied this. Here is a great example of how to get the picture, well, perfect. It is important that before you apply vinyl and before you apply the cream that you wipe down with rubbing alcohol.

I set up my etching station using a paper plate, the cream (I use Armor Etch. A small bottle goes a long way. Use the 40% coupons at our favorite craft stores and you will not die of sticker shock), and makeup sponges (I use the triangular ones). I would strongly suggest rubber gloves too. The cream makes your skin itch (more like a chemical burn).

Apply the cream in large goopy quantities. The first time I used the cream, I did not use a lot. I now goop it on. Completely covering the negative. I found that applying more and then before rinsing it off, grab that sponge and place the excess back into the bottle.

Wait about 5 minutes and rinse off with plain old tap water. I then take off the vinyl and rinse some more. Here is a sad picture of the after. I was actually really pleased with the details and how I had not a single smudge or place where the etch was lighter or darker.

I read that you can use the alcohol ink and mix in the etching cream to create color. I would recommend you practice on $1 store glasses before choosing to do this on a larger scale. Perhaps also consider using simpler designs at first too. If you have any more questions, please comment and I will be sure to respond. Thanks!

I am going to buy a new camera. My iPhone first generation is sad and broken and no amount of “fixing” on a computer program can fix my images. I already priced it and decided I am getting the camera in pink.


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