Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Room With A View Etched Window

Fashion a stylish room divider out of an old weathered window.

Junk windows are available everywhere, from salvage yards to flea markets. (You might even have one under your house!) These architectural castoffs are do-it-yourself projects just waiting to happen. And why wait when you can turn any old window into a fabulous etched room divider in no time? Armour Etch, available at craft stores, actually etches glass with just one application. So you can put away your sand blaster!

Creating a beautiful design for your etched window is simple when you use spectacular stencils. Large templates, often used for decorative wall painting, are the perfect size for panes of glass. But for artier designs with bold graphics, look for scrapbooking stencils. We found 12" by 12" doodling templates from that feature stylish swirls and paisleys. Gorgeous!

Old wooden window
Con-Tact paper
Large stencil
10 oz Armour Etch cream
Steel chain
4 Screw hooks
Drop cloth
Window cleaner
Paper towels
Sharpie marker
Craft knife
Sponge paintbrush
Protective gloves

Step 1

To create the design, trace the stencils onto the Con-Tact paper with the Sharpie. Cut out the Con-Tact paper with the craft knife. Wipe the window thoroughly with window cleaner, then stick the Con-Tact paper cutouts to the glass and rub the edges down carefully. (Positioning the cutouts on the glass is much easier if you tape the stencil to the other side of the window.) Clean the exposed glass one more time to ensure the best results.

Step 2
To etch the glass, apply the Armour Etch cream with the sponge brush, painting a thick layer of etch cream over the glass and the Con-Tact paper cutouts (don't forget to don your gloves first!). Let the etch cream set for 5 minutes, then rinse the window in the bathtub with lukewarm water, peel off the cut-outs, and continue rinsing until clean. As the window dries, the pattern will reveal itself. Amazing!

Step 3
To hang the etched window room divider, attach 2 hooks to the top of the window and 2 hooks to the ceiling the same distance apart. Hang with equal lengths of steel chain.

Brushstroke of Genius: With this technique, the brushstrokes tend to show, so use it to your advantage. Apply the etch cream with a swirling motion and any brush marks will look like part of the design.

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