Tuesday, July 9, 2013

My YHL Book Project Challenge: Make Etched Glass Containers


Last week, I challenged myself to do a project a month from the Young House Love book. The premise is that I had bookmarked about a hundred projects, but after a brief burst of activity right when I got the book, I hadn't tackled any additional projects. 


I also invited others, via the Young House Love forums to join in. Here's what we're doing every month:

1) Choose a project from the YHL book and git 'er done.
2) Link up your project (via your blog or Flickr or whatever) to the YHL book project page.
3) Link up your project here using the Linky below and check out the projects that others have done.

Fun, right?

For July, I chose Project #051: Make Etched-Glass Containers for Your Counter. I decided to make a dog treat jar for Chester's dog biscuits, as suggested by Burger in the book's sidebar. Not a difficult project by any stretch, but a) you have to start somewhere and b) I'd never etched glass before so it was something new.

Here's how it went down:

First, I bought a jar. My criteria was that it not be air-tight (my homemade biscuits need to breathe) and that I like it. 

I found this jar at the Container Store. Kinda pricey at $16.99 and also air tight, but the silicone seal was easily removed. Also, I had a 10% off coupon for signing up for their email list, so I used that and got a tiny discount, making the total $16.21 with tax. 


Next, I went out and bought sticker paper I could put through the printer for $13.68 at Office Depot. Also kinda pricey, but I bought the shipping label size, which I can now use for my Etsy shipping labels. So it's not like the unused paper will go to waste.


Finally, I bought the etching cream at Michael's. I used one of their ubiquitous 40% off coupons and so got the etching cream for $15.89.

I tried out sizing and spacing on regular paper before committing it to sticker paper.

Then I followed the instructions in the book. I'm not going to repeat them here because that seems kinda unfair, right? The project is on page 90 of the book. If you don't have it, I think you should get it. It's got lots and lots of great projects for "showing your home some love".


I also added a little strip of ribbon using my glue gun where I took off the seal to cover up the channel that it left. I liked the extra added color too. 


As for my own experience with their instructions, in the book they recommend keeping the etching cream on for the maximum amount of time. I will add that even the maximum amount of time might not be quite long enough. 


Doug and I actually did two jars (he did a glass jar for his gaming dice) and though the instructions say to leave the cream on for 15 minutes, I did mine first and followed the instructions, but it wasn't quite enough time. Doug left his on for 20 minutes and it turned out much better. We also both did little touch-ups to etch little spots that were more see-through than we liked. 

Also, follow the instructions on the etching cream bottle. Apparently you are supposed to wash your glass and then use rubbing alcohol to get any oils off the surface, which prevent the etching cream from working. I didn't and mine turned out a little blotchy. Doug did and his etching was much more even. So, a good reminder: when using a new product, make sure to read ALL the instructions before starting the project.

All in all, I'm calling this project a win since ultimately we liked the results. It wasn't exactly a budget project, though I could have used a cheaper jar:

Jar: $16.21
Sticker paper: $13.68
Etching cream: $15.89
TOTAL: $45.78

I might recommend this one only if you intend to use the etching cream for other stuff (like making sets of Dollar Store monogrammed glasses for Christmas gifts). Even with two projects and touch-ups, we might have used half a teaspoon of a 6 ounce bottle. 

So what projects have you guys done from the YHL book? Link up below! The Linky will stay open for seven days so if you haven't quite finished your project yet, that's okay. I can't wait to see what other people came up with.
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