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Basics of Glass Etching Using Etching Creme

By: Maria Nerius, Resident Craft Expert

Etching crème is easy to control and a great way to etch flat surfaces. Learn the basics of glass etching with this tutorial from Maria Nerius.

Glass  Etching



Etchall Crème




  • Etching crème
  • Glass item
  • Squeegee
  • Running water and stainless steel sink

Please note: Etching crème will permanently etch all glazed surfaces immediately so only place crème onto your glass item and rinse only in a stainless steel sink. You can also etch mirror, porcelain, ceramic, marble, and slate with etching crème.


A stencil design is applied to a clean dry glass item. You can purchase pre-made glass etching patterns of self sticking plastic or a rub on resist pattern. Another option is to use a liquid resist that can be used to draw a pattern onto the glass surface. Make sure you have a smooth stencil with no bubbles and you allow any liquid resist to dry completely before any etching is done.

Cover your work area to protect it. Put on your rubber or plastic gloves. Pour crème onto surface and use the squeegee to apply a thin even coat of etching crème into the areas that are to be etched. It is best to pour the crème to one side and spread it than to pour the crème onto the middle of the glass object. Leave crème for 15 minutes or time recommended by the etching crème manufacturer. You don’t brush on crème as it will leave brush strokes that become etched in the glass.

When etching time has elapsed, squeegee crème back into its original container. The crème can be re-used. Remove as much of the crème as you can. Rinse glass under running water remove stencil, wash with soap and water, and dry.
An easy beginner crème etching protect is to take a small mirror, place a simple stencil onto it, cover with crème, allow time to etch, rinse in running water, remove stencil, wash with soap and water, and dry. Note you want the stencil to cover all areas of the mirror you do not want etched. Give yourself plenty of room to work and spread the crème. Enjoy.

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Can you add paint to the etching cream to add color to whatever you are etching? Any idea you have to do with the etching cream please share.

I never used a squeegee, do you do this to conserve on the etchig because it's so expensive? Lisa Lucas


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