Class in Glass

By , on August 12, 2013

Painted glass vase. Photo by Chris Brignell from
Painted glass vase. Photo by Chris Brignell from

This usually happens in big churches. Almost everyone tends to stand in awe, sometimes slack jawed, upon seeing a great stained glass window. It’s pretty hard to help yourself – you just have to stand there. It is almost impossible not to admire, especially when the design is really intricate. There is something really moving about stained glass. Add some sunlight it’s a home run.

Why not bring some stained glass drama and class into your home? Here are a couple of tips and tricks to make you – and other people – look at your flat in a whole different light, like seeing through a looking glass. A painted looking glass, that is.

In this article, when we talk about “glass,” it could mean tumblers or water glasses, wine glasses, glassware such as plates and casseroles, or even mirrors. There is a special paint made for glass, but you can always work with regular paint for ceramics. It is given that using glass paint will definitely look much better and help you achieve that stained glass effect, but just in case you don’t have it, you can use regular paint, which most people have lying around somewhere in their garage or workshop.

Wash the glasses first. While some people use white spirits to completely clean the glass, water and soap would be perfectly fine. You can even use the dishwasher. After washing, wipe the glasses using a dry cloth and then set it aside to air dry. While waiting, you can prepare the paints that you will be using. Never shake the paint canister because this will produce bubbles that might be transferred onto the glass during painting. Bubbles are really hard to get rid of and you do not want it to ruin your design, unless of course, you agree that little quirks such as bubbles are part of the charm of hand painted objects. Simply stir the paint gently until it comes together. Next, put on your rubber gloves and take your glassware. You can outline your preferred design on the outer side of the glass using regular crayons that can be easily washed off when the paint dries completely. After outlining your chosen design, just dip your paint brush lightly on some paint and start filling out your pattern. It is best to work with a cloth or towel underneath so that you can rest the glass on it without it rolling around during painting breaks or when you are waiting for the paint to dry. If you intend the glassware for display purposes, give it at least a coat of polyurethane gloss as a sealant.

Once your painted glass has completely dried, which usually takes around 4 hours, just give it a good wash with some soap and water and it’s good to go.