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How to Paint Wine Glasses

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While a night out at a paint-your-own place can be fun, the cost of a sitter combined with food, drinks and entertainment can get expensive fast…and if you aren’t pleased with the art you create, it can really bring down the joy of the experience.
I have a friend’s canvas on the wall in our basement from such an experience – not that the art is bad…but she felt as though it was. It actually looks super cute on the wall with the other projects, and knowing the value of many artist’s “first works,” I had the foresight to salvage the gem from making its way to the dumpster. I warned her that the price tag would be hefty when she wants it back someday, wink.


So, how about saving the adventure out-on-the-town for post-practice and enjoy several fun evenings *in* with friends to spruce up your technique?
With the many ideas available online and the amazing ability of your own creativity, you can plan a successful painting party in the comforts of your own home. Just add some delicious treats, fun drinks and a smaller project for the kids and you’re ready to go. Take turns hosting until all of your friends are confident enough in their abilities to go public!
What you’ll need:
A safe work surface – Try covering a table with an old cloth or newspaper. Paint wipes up well when wet but is not so easily removed from clothing.
Wine glasses – Purchase at a discount store for about $1 per glass. If you already have a collection of wine glasses, consider champagne flutes, pilsner or rocks glasses.
Rubbing alcohol and cotton balls – Use these to thoroughly clean the glass. It’s difficult to keep paint fused to glass, so pre-washing is helpful. Be sure to use gentle after care as well. I hand wash my glasses keeping most of the water and soap on the inside – never submerge with other dishes…unless you *really* dislike your artwork, ha.
Paint brushes – Variety packs are available at craft stores and unless you consider yourself an expert, pretty much any quality will do just fine. Be sure to purchase several different sizes.
Skewers – I love using the sharp end of a skewer for small details…and a signature. I turn my brushes around and use the blunt side for dots. Get creative and try using different objects to add flair to your project!
Acrylic paints – I’ve experimented with both general crafting and specialized glass paints. The quality seems to vary. I had had one glass paint wash off, so I started using all the paints I already own and simply glazing over them with a varnish before baking. If a mistake is made while painting the glass, simply wipe clean with a wet paper towel.
Varnish – This is an acrylic paint and can come in several opaque shades – some with glitter which is super fun! The glaze is just one more helpful way to hold the paint onto the glass and prevent chipping. Be sure the original painting is dry before brushing on the varnish.
For more ideas, browse the Internet and see what others have done. I hosted a bachelorette party for a friend who will be getting married this fall – at the party we each painted a special glass for the couple to keep as a commemorative collection by all their favorite artists. I had found a bachelorette-appropriate painting idea beforehand – the curvatureof the glass makes a the illusion rather obnoxious! My friend had the honor of sipping out of this thing at her party:
Baking Instructions:
After glaze is completely dry,
Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil
Place glazed glasses in a *cold* oven (to prevent breaking)
Turn temp to 350 degrees
Set timer for 20 minutes, then turn the oven off
Let glasses cool completely while  in the oven
Placing the glass in a cold oven prevents the glass from shattering with the sudden temperature change – same reason for leaving the glass in as it cools.
The smell of paint baking will fill the air, so be sure to ventilate well, eek.
Some paints change color during the baking process and you just won’t know till you try.
Have fun! The best art is that which is created with a joyful heart and good friends!
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  • comment avatar Ashley June 21, 2012

    could you use a spray varnish?

  • comment avatar jaime swartzendruber July 1, 2012

    Hi Ashley! I think a spray varnish would be great. Brushing it on can leave streaks, so probably better to find a food-grade spray 😉

  • comment avatar Natalie July 26, 2012

    Hi! Thank you so much for posting the wine glass painting instructions. They are terrific and thorough. I made some for a baby shower that I did recently as favors and everyone loved them.

  • comment avatar Emily August 22, 2012

    I love this! my question is what kind of discount stores are you talking about? I searched for one but no luck 🙁

    • comment avatar Terri Gelb August 15, 2013

      Any dollar store has cheap wine glasses.

  • comment avatar Jaime Clark Swartzendruber August 23, 2012

    Hi Emily! Our local Dollar Tree has a variety of glassware…Good Will and other thrift stores should as well. I’m considering painting some old Mason jars for tea/lemonade next summer too – a recycling project!!!

    • comment avatar Emily August 26, 2012

      Thanks for the ideas! I will check those out!!!

  • comment avatar SD November 16, 2012

    Hi, I heard that acrylic paints must not be backed in the oven.
    Can you tell me exactly what paints you used? Were they enamel acrylic paints? or enamel paints? I heard acrylic paints will left when in contact with water.

    • comment avatar Meghan October 6, 2013

      You can bake acrylics, just not the cadmium colors (red / yellow).. these are poisonous metal based colors.

  • comment avatar Tiffany January 21, 2013

    Well hello there! I saw the “Mile High” and had to come check out the website. I live in Parker, Co and work in Denver and I paint glasses. Wine glasses, martini glasses, beer mugs, or just about anything glass one could enjoy a beverage from. I even painted a few Christmas ornaments for my niece and nephew 🙂 I got started back in August of 2006. Some are great, some…not so much. I have a few I’ve kept for my own, but the majority have been given as gifts for a variety of occasions, beginning with my cousins wedding.
    I have found a Super selection of glasses at places such as TJ Maxx/ Homegoods! That is my go to spot. I got a box of 10-17 oz. “coolers” for $9.99. These are the kind of glasses you see at the restaurants that maybe have their logo or a booze company’s logo on them. I also got 6 oversided martini glasses for $12.99. A little more “expensive”, but really nice glasses. WalMart also has boxes of glasses like this. But if you are just looking for individual glasses or maybe just 2 or 3, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, etc. are good places to look.
    As for paint. I have used several different brands of hobby paint acryllic glass paint and found some I love! It’s made by DELTA and is called “Air-Dry PermEnamel”. It’s a 3 step process. Step 1: Surface Conditioner; Step 2: Paint, a variety of colors for your design (although I have not found a good shade of Orange. I think thiers is tangerine). Step 3: Clear Gloss Glaze. THESE PAINTS DO NOT HAVE TO BE BAKED! The instruction state: “For a rich glossy sheen, apply a coat of Satin Glaze over dried PermEnamel Paint using a soft synthetic brush. Dry 10 days. DO NOT thin with water. Clean brush with soapy water. (after the 10 day drying period the glass/design is) Dishwasher-safe, mild soap, Micowave & oven safe up to 350 degrees.” I have only experienced ONE glass that was ruined by a trip through the dishwasher. It was one I gave as a Christmas gift to my X-Brother-in-Law. He didn’t deserve it anyway, so maybe it was a sign 🙂 Of course if you do not have time for the 10 day drying period before giving your creations as gifts or what-not, you can always instruct the recipient to to wash it until after that 10 day drying period. They may want to use it right away, but in my experience people are so appreciative of something you made for them that no one else has, that they follow instructions. I tell them they are dishwasher safe, but they mostly insist on hand washing.
    Sorry if I ended up high-jacking your thread here, but if you’d like to my glasses I keep a “Crafts” album on Facebook:

    Happy Painting!

  • comment avatar Sarah Barah January 28, 2014

    Lovely! I love the skewers idea instead of buying fine brushes. I tried my first glass painting with a set of wine and beer glasses and made a great christmas gift.

    Im thinking of glass painting for a bridal shower I am hosting.

  • comment avatar Alisha November 21, 2014

    Hi! I just started painting wine glasses and am hooked! Do you recommend a product for my finished product to shine, such as a clear spray paint glaze or gloss? Any advice will help.

  • comment avatar Lisa December 7, 2016

    What brand sealer?