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Home > Howtos > Glass Etching - Decorative Mirror

Circuit Bridge Project Guide - Glass Etching using PhotoEZ or StencilPro stencils

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Glass etching project guide - Decorative Mirror
Materials and Supplies
 • Decorative mirror to be stenciled  • StencilPro™ Stencil
 • Stencil Adhesive   
   Spray Mount Artist's Adhesive
   from 3M or Delta Stencil Spray
   can be used
 • Glass Etching Cream - EtchAll
    or ArmourEtch are recommended
 • Flat paintbrush     • Tape
 • Paper towels     • Latex gloves
 • Tap water     • Smaller Paintbrush to apply the etchant
  when using with more intricate designs
 • Dark Room Specialty Box
  for safely storing and washing
  out the stencils
 • Plastic canvas to support the wet
  stencil during rinsing and cleaning
Read all instructions before beginning your project. Read manufacture labels on products and supplies being used. Use safety glasses and gloves when using etching cream. Practice on a similar surface before starting your actual project. Recycled glass jars are great to practice with. They even make great inexpensive gifts when decorated and filled with goodies. Have FUN!
Project By:   Circuit Bridge
Time to Do:  2-3 hours
Skill Level:   Intermediate
Develop StencilPro Stencil Step 1: Make your stencil

This project guide assumes that you have already made your StencilPro stencil. Click here for sample instrucions on how to make your stencil.

Please, note that StencilPro is more suitable for glass etching than PhotoEZ; however, if you do decide to use PhotoEZ, make sure that you use repositionable spray adhesive to hold the stencil in place and to prevent the etching cream from seeping through the stencil. StencilPro is more sensitive to light than PhotoEZ; thus, it needs less time to develop. Be sure to follow the appropriate exposure chart when developing your stencil.

Prepare your glass surface for etching

Step 2: Clean the glass surface

Cleaning the glass surface will ensure that there are no fingerprints or dirt that could interfere with the quality of the final result. Be sure the glass is completely dry and lint-free before placing the stencil.


Position your StencilPro or PhotoEZ stencil on the mirror

Step 3: Position your stencil on glass

Lightly apply repositionable stencil adhesive spray on film side (shiny side) of stencil. Blot off excess adhesive. Too much adhesive may clog the silk screen. Align and press the stencil onto the glass surface. Let the adhesive dry for a few minutes before proceeding with the next step. To avoid clogging your stencil, use one quick squirt from a distance of at least 12".

Tip: repositionable spray adhesive is available at your local craft or home office supply store.

Circuit Bridge favorites:
Spray Mount Artist's Adhesive from 3M and
Delta Stencil Spray Adhesive.

Apply glass etching cream

Step 4: Etching the glass

Brush a thin coat of etching cream on stencil, then dab a generous coat of etching cream over the first coat. For small stencils use a medium stiff chisel shaped paint brush as shown in the picture. Follow directions on etching cream bottle for the amount of time needed to set. For safety's sake, please wear disposable latex gloves. Do not let the stencil dry on glass. If it does dry, soak stencil in water before removing.

Recommended glass etching creams: EtchAll or ArmourEtch.


Step 5: Rinsing

Rinse glass under running tap water use a brush to remove etching cream. While water is still running, remove stencil and continue to rinse and brush until all traces of etching cream is removed. Wash surface with soap and water and dry with towel. Rinse stencil and blot on paper towel, then place stencil on clean-dry paper towel to dry and use again.

Tip: Use darkroom specialty box or a plastic canvas to wash out your stencil.
Decorative Mirror Glass etching project guide

You have successfully completed the Decorative Mirror Glass Etching project!

The information in this project guide is presented in good faith, but no warranty is given, nor results guaranteed. Circuit Bridge, LLC disclaims all liability from any injury to anyone undertaking the construction of this project as a result of improper safety precautions. Since we have no control over physical surrounding the application of information herein contained, Circuit Bridge, LLC disclaims any liability for untoward results.

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