Etch Your Own Shot Glass Wedding Favor

Learn how to make your own unique etched glass shot glass to use as wedding favors.

Etching glass is a gorgeous technique that uses chemicals or sand abrasions to roughen a piece of glass and make it appear frosted and opaque.It is a perfect do-it-yourself technique that can be used to transform plain shot glasses into beautiful and personal wedding favors.Etching glass is really quite simple, but you should still be careful and make sure to follow instructions carefully.There are two main ways to etch glass: sand abrasion and chemical etching.Sand abrasion, sometimes considered "real" etching, uses equipment to fire small particles of sand at a piece of glass to chip away at the surface.It allows for shading and sculpting of the glass piece.Chemical etching relies on store bought creams to eat away at the surface of the glass, producing a uniformly frosted appearance where applied.The latter technique is far simpler, cheaper and more readily available for the home crafter.

The supplies needed to create etched shot glasses for wedding favors are pretty easy to collect.First of all, you will want a supply of sturdy shot glasses; it is suggested that you purchase more than you will need in order to be able to practice and refine your technique first.You will also need etching chemicals, which should be available at your local crafts store.Etching chemicals are marketed under a variety of names and in a range of prices.Depending on how many shot glasses you want to make, it may be more cost efficient to buy a more expensive but reusable product than a cheaper, single-use brand.There are also sometimes kits available that will include stencils for lettering and designs; depending on your preferences and what images you want on the shot glass, this may be a worthwhile purchase for you as well.If you do not buy a kit, you will also need protective rubber gloves, protective eyewear, any relevant stencils (or Contact paper and a utility knife to make your own), a timer, and Q-Tips for application of the chemical.

When you are ready to etch your shot glasses, you will first need to affix the stencils to the glass firmly.Kits will usually have an adhesive included.Contact paper also works well: long strips can be stuck directly to the glass for stripes.Be creative: self-adhesive hole reinforcements make good polka dots and other children's shape stickers can be used for their silhouettes.Remember that the area covered by stickers will be clear in the final product and the area not covered will be etched.

Put on your protective eyewear and gloves.Etching chemicals are very toxic and you want to protect yourself while using them.Follow the directions on the package.Make sure to apply an even layer of the chemical to avoid a streaky or uneven final product.Set the timer and leave the chemical on the glass for the required period of time before rinsing the shot glass.Make sure when rinsing to remove all the chemical from the glass and your gloves before drying the glass and removing the stencil.

When planning your design, remember that for the beginning or at-home crafter, it is usually easier to etch large shapes or graphic designs than words or intricate and delicate designs.Consider using a motif from your wedding or a large singular design.Linked wedding bands, bells, or a wedding cake would all make festive and highly appropriate glasses.To ensure that each glass turns out the same, use a clip-art image printed out on your computer and copied onto Contact Paper, or photocopy a hand-drawn image to make multiple stencils.Above all, have fun putting a personal and memorable touch on your etched wedding favors.

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