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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Mercury Glass DIY

Mercury Glass is an absolute favorite of mine. I love the aged look. And I love the fact that everything old becomes new again after a fashion.  I have always wanted to know how you can create it,  being a DIY kind of person. I found some interesting blogs and sites that told me how. 
What is Mercury Glass you say????
According to what I found out "mercury glass" is also known as "silver glass" because the original process created in the 1800's used a silver nitrate solution in a double sided blown glass item that was then sealed. This created a mirrored effect on the piece.  (And  I always thought it meant they used actual mercury sandwiched between the glass.)  Nowadays they, and us DIYers, just used the mirror glass paint to create the effect.  much simpler.  But I will collect original mercury glass as there are still some pieces to find in antiques stores for a price.
This is what I found out about how to DIY it.......
You can only use Krylon's "mirror glass" paint as other shiny or metallic paints are not for creating a mirrored effect. I found that Michael's Stores do not carry it anymore, neither does Home Depot, but I found it at Walmart. 
 All you do is spray the inside of the object with short bursts of the paint.  Continously shake the can. Try to keep it an even spray, but no worries if you dont as the uneveness enhances the aged effect.  I spray my pieces about 7 layers. Let it dry between layers. you can do more or less, its your project.  Then when its completely dry, spray or drip vinegar onto the painted surface as much or as little as you want.  Let that stand for a few minutes. Then gently wipe it off.  I found the edge of a paper towel work best for small areas. You can also rub off areas with your dry fingers to give it a worn look. and Thats it!!!!  Simple.   And so beautiful. 
I bought a few glass votive candle holders to experiment on and I love the way they turned out. I found the Dollar Stores have a great selection of glass vases and candle holders that you can create beautiful mercury glass effects on for a few pennies a piece. Or you can use any glass item you have in your home already that you can paint on the inside.  The photos above are 6 votive candle holders I found at the Dollar Store. The paint itself is about $8 a can, so for $14 I have 6 beautiful mercury glass votive holders. I did find that the paint does not go on as well as I thought it would on smaller items. I had to spray more times at short bursts than told, as the spray from the paint blasted the paint off the surface a little easier than thought it would.  But I accomplished my look after finessing with the paint.  It all turned out good in the end. 

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