Today I want to tell you about one of my recent craft projects using the Silhouette Cameo: Etching Glass.

I have a couple of everyday use glasses that we all love using, but over time (and since they were not expensive glasses) they lost some of their shine and acquired spots and streaks because of glass corrosion. Since I have been wanting to try my hand at glass etching for quite some time I figured this would be a great project to “save” my glasses.


Supplies needed:

  • glasses to etch
  • vinyl to cut the stencils from
  • erasable marker and a ruler
  • glass etching cream
  • a paintbrush
  • gloves and goggles
  • window cleaner and a cloth
  • a stainless steal sink or an old plastic bowl for rinsing

First I created my stencils in Silhouette Studio. After opening a new document I changed the page settings to 8 in width in the page setting window because this was the width of the vinyl I was going to use for my stencils (you might have to click twice on the icon to get to the menu you want to see).

First I added couple of straight long cutting lines across the width of the vinyl to get some strips to use as borders for the designs. Holding the shift key while drawing the line does ensure it will be straight, using the replicate window to copy the first line makes quick work of getting as many as needed.

These lines are about .5 in wide to give them a comfortable size to avoid etching cream spills on the border.

My next set of lines was smaller (about .25 in wide), these were the stripes I wanted to have on my glasses later, since these can overlap at the end, I didn’t bother with making them the correct width.

Then I added another set of lines, using some of my craft cutting lines, to get something with a little more movement. Since these cutting lines are designed to be continuous I didn’t have to worry about the repeat. Resizing them according to the circumference of my glasses would make sure I had the correct repeat. (adding a cutting rectangle around them helped to peel them off more easily)Here’s a look at the set I created:


While the Cameo was cutting them I grabbed my glasses, an erasable marker and a ruler to draw some guiding lines to help me get the patterns straight (I’m hopeless with doing something straight without measurements, lol).

And here’s a look at the glasses with the vinyl attached – it is important to make sure the vinyl is applied without any air bubbles or folds – else the etching cream will creep underneath the vinyl and you won’t have any crisp edges.

Before starting with the etching cream I grabbed the window cleaner and a cloth and removed the marks that were not covered by vinyl and all fingerprints in the areas that were supposed to be etched. Then I put on my gloves (really important when working with etching cream) and started smothering away.

Unfortunately I cannot show you a picture of those glasses covered with etching cream – because I forgot to take one. Duh. But I have one from two other glasses I did, testing a circle pattern, let me show you that one – in hindsight I should have applied a little more of the etching cream to get a more even result (but I only had a very small jar of that stuff and a lot of plans for using it, lol – it’s not that easy to get your hands on it over here…)

After the waiting period I put the gloves back on and rinsed the cream of in my kitchen sink. Then I let the glasses dry (the etched parts are lighter when wet and darker when dry) and checked to make sure all areas that were supposed to be etched looked satiny before taking off the vinyl and rinsing them again.

Here they are now – much better than before, I think. (um.. as you can see I was in a little bit of a hurry when taking these pictures, so the glasses were not completely dry and thus a little spotty looking :blush:, but I think you get the picture, lol)

The sad part is, that I don’t have a freebie for you today – I created this project in Silhouette Studio and as you probably know, Silhouette does not allow sharing .studio files, neither for free nor for sale (and there is no option to save in another file format). But you might want to go to my post about scalloped notecards and pick up the craft scissor cut line freebie there, if you did not do so yet. 😉

As soon as I can get my hands on more of that etching cream I will have some more fun with this – there are so many things coming to my mind: vases with flower swirls, glasses with lemon slices, silhouettes, names, sayings – and all my spice jars will have etched labels! Finally the labeling will not fall victim to the dishwasher anymore, yay! 😀