Mercury Glass How-To

Create the look of mercury glass for less with mirror spray paint and a secret ingredient from your kitchen. Watch and learn how!

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Mercury glass adds a shimmery, rustic touch to your home, but the real thing can be pricey. Get the look using items you have around the house and some mirrored spray paint. (We used the Krylon Looking Glass line.) Decorate the glass sheet from a picture frame with this technique, or try it with a clear vase. Pendant lamps and votive candleholders are popular mercury glass items, since light shines through the crackled pattern. True mercury glass is silver, but you can switch it up with gold, bronze, or even another metallic spray paint color. Here's how to do it in five simple steps:

What You Need

  • Glass (use the sheet from a picture frame, a vase, or other glass container)
  • Glass cleaner
  • Paper towels
  • Craft paper
  • Krylon Looking Glass Spray Paint
  • Spray bottle
  • White vinegar
  • Water
  • Cotton rag

Step 1: Prepare the Glass

Wipe down the glass you plan to use with cleaner to ensure a smooth, dry application surface.

Step 2: Spray Paint

Spray five thin, even coats of Krylon Looking Glass. Allow the paint to dry between coats. If you want to practice, try it on a clean glass sauce or pickle jar from your kitchen first before moving to your main project.

Step 3: Apply Vinegar Solution

Here's where your secret kitchen ingredient comes into play. Fill an empty spray bottle with vinegar and water in a 1:1 ratio. Spritz the surface of the painted glass with the solution in random patterns.

Step 4: Blot the Surface

Blot the glass surface with a clean cotton rag. This will pick up small patches of paint to give the crackly effect.

Step 5: Final Coat

To finish, spray with an additional coat of paint and let dry. And that's it! You have yourself an inexpensive home accessory that looks store-bought. Some decorating ideas: Paint several vases of varying heights and cluster them on a tray. Line up pieces to add sparkle to your holiday mantel. Arrange mercury glass accents as a centerpiece for a fancy dinner.

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