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Make Your Mark : Etching

Aug 27, 2007
Etching glass is one of the most beautiful kinds of crafting a person can do. The results often are so high quality that people never believe you did it yourself. Want more good news? Etching isn't difficult either. If you can follow simple directions, you can etch any of your glass or mirrors for stunningly detailed results. The process is not hard for avid crafters, and even beginners can learn to etch fairly well.

Your first step, as in any kind of crafting project, is to gather your supplies. Find an etching cream that is relatively inexpensive for your first try at this technique, and practice on glass that is easily thrown away before you sit down to etch your windows or favorite wine glass set. Be sure to gather all the supplies your etching creams says you need, including gloves and a face mask if necessary. Etching cream can be very harmful for you body if not used with care. For this reason alone, etching is not a good craft to do with your children.

Of course, you'll need glass to etch. Find a flat surface for your first attempt. Hand mirrors work well and are inexpensive. You can also try etching glasses, jars, windows, picture frames, and any other type of glass. Be sure that your glass is clean and dry before you begin.

Next, you'll need a stencil. Start with larger prints that do not have much detail until you get the hang of the technique. Clip art works well, or you can find etching kits that have stencils ready for you to use. Use carbon paper to trace your stencil onto contact paper-white paper works best. You can then cut the design from the contact paper using a small scissors or a utility knife. When you cut out the design, leave at least an inch or two of paper around it to make application easier. Stick the contact paper to the glass, making sure that all the edges are firmly stuck down, and then follow your etching cream's directions to apply a thick coat of the cream with a foam brush or paper towel.

After applying the cream, you'll need to let your glass sit for a specific period of time. Read the directions, since every etching cream is different. Your local craft supply store will probably carry a few different brands, so be sure that you understand how each works. When the etching cream is done working its magic, remove the cream and wash the glass. You should find wonderful results! You can give your etched projects away as gifts, beautify your house, or sell your crafts at a local fair. Whatever you decide to do, the finish product will be something that was easy to make, but that looks like it was store-bought.
About the Author
Stephen C Campbell (MBA, MSc, MCIM) is a Business Consultant & Internet Marketer, he has produced a wide range of topical subjects In Audio including this one at
http://www.informationinaudio.com
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