Hand painted glassware is all the rage right now. I've come up with this super simple, quick, easy and cute craft. I'm so blessed to have a grand baby in my life so I use baby food jars. If you don't know anyone with a baby, any small jars will do. You can even purchase small, plain, votive candle cups very inexpensively at your local craft, sewing, or superstores. They make great gifts for family, friends, teachers, hostesses, or yourself as well!
Baby food jars, plain candle cups, or any small jar
ENAMEL paints, usually sold by the acrylic paints
~white, tan, black, red, green, orange
Ribbon, twine, or raffia for the rim
Palette, plastic lid, or paper plate
A couple (soft) paper napkins
Cookie sheet to hold jars while baking
Tea light candles or flameless candles
Glue (optional for gluing ribbon at upper edge)
NOTE: If you need to buy paint for this project, don't buy pink for the cheeks, you can easily add a tiny amount of red to the white.
IMPORTANT - READ FIRST:
Always start with a squeaky clean glass and keep it that way. Before you begin painting an area, be sure to wipe it down with alcohol and if you accidentally touch that area during painting, wipe that spot again with the alcohol. The oils from your hands can actually prevent your paint from permanently sticking to the glass. Sometimes it's easiest to hold the glass with your hands or fingers on the inside. At some places you may find that you want to add a second coat. It’s also very important to allow paint to completely dry between coats and color changes. Be sure to wash and dry your brushes thoroughly after each color or between coats.
Note: If you are recycling a glass food jar, if you soak the jar in hot soapy water, the label should peel right off. If you find that glue is left behind, the best thing to use is GooGone which can be purchased about anywhere. If you don't have any, or don't want to buy any, you can use a paste made up of cooking oil, baking soda, and salt. The GooGone is just so much easier and quicker.
1. Now that your jar is squeaky clean and free from fingerprints, you can paint your first coat using the enamel paint. I find that it's best to place and hold the jar from the inside with my non painting hand. This way fingers stay off the glass. Paint first coat as follows:
Gingerbread people: tan
Hint #1 - For painting the entire jar for the base color, I liked the look of dabbing rather than painting with a brush. The paintbrush leaves a streaky look and this leaves a more textured look. Plus, I like the way it looks when the lit candle is inside.
Hint #2 - If you aren't happy with your painting at any point in the painting process, just wash the jar and the paint will come right off, then start all over again. This will only work when the paint is fresh, once the jars are cured or baked, this will not work.
2. After the first coat is dry you can paint the details, which are very simple if using the faces that I chose. If you want to add a second coat to the first coat you can do that, but I chose not to because I like to see more of the candle glow.
If you don't like my faces, search the Internet and find some you like. The ones I chose are so simple and I'm not the best painter, so I like simple details. It's just very important to let the coats completely dry before painting too close or on other colors.
3. Once the glasses are completely dry, you will have to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for on the bottle of the paint brand you are using for finishing. For example, for the brand of paint I used, I was to allow my paint to dry for 48 hours. After that, I set them in a cool oven, I set the temperature to 325 degrees, bake 30 minutes, turn oven off, let them cool down in the oven before removing.
4. After they have cooled off, you can add your ribbon, raffia, or twine to the rim. As you can see, I liked the look of just putting the ribbon at the upper edge without a bow. I feel it's safer this way because of the candle flame. Be sure to use a glue that can withstand the heat from the candle. A glue gun type of glue will probably melt and your ribbon will keep falling off. I do worry about a bow that could catch fire, so you can use thinner ribbon or twine, and keep the bow below the upper edge.
Pop in a candle and enjoy!
After they are baked, they can be washed. The bottle of paint I used said they are top shelf dishwasher safe, but I would still wash by hand.