Friday, October 28, 2011

Mercury Glass Chalkboard Tutorial

Or rather, Mercury Glass Chalk Ink Window Tutorial (or some other nonsense like that).  Let's just stick with Mercury Glass Chalkboard Tutorial to keep it simple.

Some of you may remember this post where I showed you how I created my faux mercury glass.  Well, in this tutorial I've combined my love for chalkboards with my love for mercury glass to make a mercury glass chalkboard.  What is a mercury glass chalkboard? Let me show you:

For this 'chalkboard window' I used a vintage cabinet door that came out of a 1920's bungalow.  I'd had it sitting in the garage a while and couldn't decide what to do with it.  Finally I decided to do the single pane in mercury glass and the smaller panes I will add some photos of my kids after I get them printed.  I painted the frame itself in ASCP graphite and distressed it heavily.  Eventually I would like to hang it from a ribbon that goes through the hinges as well, but that's for another time.

To get this effect, I basically followed my instructions for the faux mercury glass I posted previously. I will do a quick run through here - I did the tutorial on an extra piece of glass I had laying around.  

I started with clean(ish) glass. 

Sprinkled it with a little water:

Lightly sprayed about 4 coats of Krylon's looking glass spray paint.

This is what it looks like when you first spray the paint.  When the surface is all even then you can spray the next coat.  Since it's laying flat you don't have to worry about runs as much, but still do light coats.  Blowing helps dry it some :)

Close up of the painted over water droplets:

After the paint is dry (took about 7 minutes or so) I very GENTLY wiped with a slightly damp very soft cloth.  Nothing rough, no paper towels or anything like that.  A piece of an old t-shirt would be perfect.  First I gently wiped one direction, then the other.  After I wiped the droplets off, I used a dry corner and carefully dried the rest of the water off.  The looking glass paint is very delicate at this stage, I'm sure if you let it dry overnight first it would be better, but I like fast projects.

Then I very LIGHTLY sprayed some Rustoleum Hammered finish in gray to give the holes some depth.

Lastly, I sprayed the entire back in flat black:

Finished glass inside (it's so hard to photograph this stuff so you can really see the detail!!)

Now, here's the actual project on the old cabinet door:

You'd probably be able to see a black chalk ink marker better, but I only have white on hand right now.  I bought my chalk ink markers are Michael's but there's a website where they have a rainbow of colors. 

This technique would be perfect for thrift store frames.  I've also used it on thrift store frames then used the frames on a table top as a tray.  You could hang it on a wall and add hooks or knobs and use it as a message center for keys or coats.  You're only limited by your imagination and 'you only fail if you fail to try!'

Update, what do you think about it set up like this?

Go mercury glass something this weekend and send me the link!

As seen on:


  1. This is a brilliant idea. I have used the same process making mercury glass, but never to the point you did!

    I am very happy to be your latest friend and follower and hope that you will consider doing the same. I would be delighted for you to link to Potpourri Friday (in progress).

  2. Love this tutorial, thank you so much! I love what you came up with!

  3. Hi! I'm stopping back by to say thank you for linking to Potpourri Friday! I appreciate it and hope you will make this a weekly party stop!

  4. A fabulous tutorial...thanks for sharing your experience!

  5. That's pretty gosh darn cool Brandi! It looks authentic too! Wonderful!

  6. Ohhh I am loving that pumpkin there too!

  7. Awesome tutorial. My girlfriend and I were just talking about this the other day! Followed you over from Saved By Love Creations. I'd love it if you linked this to my party that started on Tuesday at

  8. Thanks for posting this! I so badly want to do it--but can't finding the looking glass spray anywhere--so frustrating. I guess I may have to buy it online. I have been looking since I saw it on Nate. Could you spray the back with another color, other than black? A lot of the mercury glass I have is silver on the inside. Just wondering.

  9. Hi Sandy. That's not good about the spray paint-what stores do you have?

    As far as spraying a different color, yes certainly but the look won't be as authentic. I have some vases that I painted aqua on the inside. It still looks good just not as real. Good luck!

  10. Wow! I love this! And I have some looking glass spray paint! Yay! :) I'm gonna try it, thanks for the great tutorial!


  11. Excellent tutorial!!! Thanks for linking up to our party!

  12. Love this and your tutorial was very helpful!

  13. This looks like so much fun!
    New follower....thanks for the great tutorial.: )

  14. This turned out amazing. I recently redid a window with this stuff too but even though I am a huge fan of Chalk Ink, I didn't think to use them with my window. Will definitely have to try it out now. Thanks for the idea.

  15. This turned out fantastic! I have tried the water drop method, but not in the way you did. Love it. Sharing at my party tomorrow. Thanks!

  16. This turned out wonderful! Thank you for the tutorial. I am visiting from Redoux!

  17. OMG this is an AWESOME project! Thanks for sharing. I would love to have you as a guest to show off this tutorial on my blog. Let me know if you are interested. I'm your newest follower and I would be honored to have you link up to my VIP party this weekend =)

  18. Love your mercury glass chalkboard! Love the decor you used with it too!

  19. Thanks so much for the info and tips on this project! What a great idea. I've been wanting to do some projects with this look and didn't know about Kryon's looking glass paint. THANK YOU! I found your site through Tatertots and Jello.

  20. I. Love. This. Thanks so much for the detailed steps!


  21. What a Creative idea and the results are amazing! Thank you for sharing it!

    Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian


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