My obsession with mercury glass is one of those things I haven’t fully disclosed to my husband. I have been secretly stashing my collection of everything from candlesticks to glass birds in my closet, all in anticipation of the master bedroom redo that is approaching.
I also have been searching high and low for the perfect DIY Mercury Glass tutorial and I think I may have found it – thanks of course to Pinterest and the wonderful people who post their projects there! I decided to use the tutorial from Take The Side Street and I really thing she nailed it. That being said… I think my technique needs some work and practice because while I think my vases turned out great – the perfectionist in me thinks they can be better.
I started with some random glass vases and votive holders that I’ve had sitting around. You’ll need a can of Krylon Looking Glass Spray Paint. I found this item to hard to find – I went to Home Depot and Lowe’s and they didn’t have it. Krylon’s website says that Ace Hardware carries the paint but my local stores didn’t have it either. I ended up ordering it off of Amazon – so if this is project that you want to do this weekend – this might be the one thing you need to think about getting in advance. You’ll also need a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water. A big stack of paper towels and I grabbed some q-tips for the small votive holders to get the corners.
Start by washing everything with soap and water. I wouldn’t recommend using Windex to clean the glass. I did another medium sized vase that I had cleaned with it and I omitted the pictures because it turned out horrible. I suspect that it was the Windex since I only used it on that one item. Make sure that everything is completely dry before you begin.
First you should know that this spray paint is really runny – and I do mean really runny. You don’t want any runs in the paint so you have to apply the paint in very light coats. I did three coats on each piece letting it completely dry between each one. You can see it drying right before your eyes – kind of fun to watch and it only takes a few minutes to dry.
After I had all the pieces painted I let them dry long enough to chat with my kids and eat an Otter Pop and then was ready to begin the distressing. I worked one piece at a time because it is warm here right now and I was worried about the vinegar drying before I got to each of the pieces. Using the squirt bottle with the vinegar mixture I lightly sprayed inside of the container so that it beaded up a bit. Check your sprayer before you start.
Let the mixture sit on the paint for about 30 seconds. I found that it was actually easier to distress the wetter it was so I got to work right away. The tutorial showed a neatly folded paper towel being used but I actually liked the look I was getting with a paper towel that was bunched up and dampened with the vinegar mixture better. Using the paper towel I lightly dabbed the inside of the container – slightly rubbing to “tear” away the paint on the inside.
Once I was done distressing the piece to the point that I was happy with it – I let it dry again completely and finished it with a light coat of the paint again. It is recommended that you finish the pieces with a clear coat on the inside and I would absolutely agree. When I was taking these pictures I nicked the inside of some of the pieces and while I’m chalking it up to additional character over time you may end up ruining the look of your piece.
I am pretty happy with the way my centerpiece vases turned out. I think the next time I am going to go for 5+ coats of paint with maybe two rounds of distressing in between. I think it might give the piece additional depth. When I get around to trying this out I’ll share some pictures. In the meantime, someone tell my husband to send me some flowers so that I have some cheap vases to work with (that is the best way to get them, right?)!
Check out some of the other projects I’d planning to try by clicking here!