Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Yep, Another Faux Mercury Glass Post...

Procrastination. It probably should be one of my new year resolutions, but I'll get around to doing those later...

I know I've mentioned how my  daughter unwittingly started me on the path to blogging. She also sent me an invitation to join Pinterest. I LOVE Pinterest. It is probably as addictive as coffee. One of the first things I ever pinned was a photo of Pottery Barn mercury glass lamps. I'm sure you've seen it countless times. Really, who wouldn't love these lamps?

At first I pinned them just because I liked the way they looked. Then, I noticed there was a tutorial!
It is from iVillage DIY Hacks. It was titled, "Why Buy What You Can Make?" Well, cheapskate that I am, I clicked on it and found a brief tutorial that mentioned the magic potion for making these lovely lamps: Krylon Looking Glass spray paint. I LOVE spray paint! I was all over this idea.

I looked at Walmart, but couldn't find it. I looked at Lowe's and Hobby Lobby and couldn't find it. Then, someone mentioned it was in a smaller can, and they'd seen it at Hobby Lobby. I need very little incentive to make a trip to Hobby Lobby, so off I went with my 40 percent off coupon in hand! I found it when I looked with the small cans.

Meanwhile, I'd been looking for clear glass lamps to paint. I had seen tons of them, and never really wanted a clear glass lamp. I figured finding them would be simple. I was wrong - there were none. Zero. I was convinced all the early birds had picked them up, sprayed them and blogged about them. 

So, I kept looking for clear glass lamps and reading every mercury glass tutorial I saw in blogland. Most tutorials were lacking some information I needed - such as do you spray the inside or the outside of an object? Would it only work on glass, or could other materials work, too?

The paint was considerably more expensive than other spray paint, and I didn't want to experiment and ruin a cool thrift store find OR waste expensive paint.

I eventually found lamps I liked, and I'll tell you all about them in my next post. But meanwhile, the first thing I experimented on were a couple of glass candlesticks I picked up in November. 

 They were cheap, and it was 50 percent off day, too!

That's right. The pair was .75c - perfect! I liked the shape of them, and visualized them in mercurial silver. 

That same day, I found these:

I thought they made excellent candidates for the faux mercury treatment, too. The vessels are tinted amber, and the stems are clear.

Tonight I have sprayed multiple coats of Looking Glass paint on a variety of items, and so far this is what I have experienced:

  • This paint is very thin and watery - not at all like regular spray paint. You are supposed to spray water on items before you spray the paint - that is what gives you a bubbly texture. I have found it pools, and must be "played with" to get a somewhat consistent coverage. You don't want complete coverage, because you want it to have imperfections like aged mercury glass. It takes some time and tweaking to get a beautifully distressed finish and to keep drips from forming strange patterns. 
  • The candlesticks above were sprayed on the outside, since they were not hollow. They only took two coats.  The stems were sprayed on the inside, and they also looked good after only two coats. 
  • I was able to scrape off the paint with my thumbnail after it had dried a short while. It may cure and be more durable, but it would probably be a good idea to give it a clear coat if sprayed on the outside of an object.
  • The lamps were sprayed on the inside. It was fairly difficult to get an even coverage and a lovely mottled finish - there were more drips to deal with. I have sprayed at least 6 times, and they still appear to be very translucent. I was hoping for a more opaque finish. I'll keep spraying and post about the lamps next time!

One of my lamps had a funny little surprise I discovered! I felt like a kid opening a cereal box with a prize inside! Do they still do that?

Word for the Day:

Proverbs 16:16

How much better to get wisdom than gold, to choose understanding rather than silver!

May this new year have much wisdom, understanding, gold AND silver for you!


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farmhouse-story said...

i do love how the candle sticks and glasses turned out, revi:) really lovely! i finally got my hands on a can of this paint, but i'm waiting for warmer weather to work with it outside. looking forward to seeing your lamps!

Elegant Economies said...

I bought the paint, but haven't made up my mind about what to use it on. Your candlesticks came out beautifully! Was that a tease or are you going to tell us what you found in your lamp?
Bless ya, Audrey

Jennifer @ Dimples and Tangles said...

Thanks for sharing your process. I would like to try this out too. Can't wait to see the lamps!

outjunking said...

These are wonderful. Can't wait to see your lamps. Some lady the other day was riding my back side in traffic when all was said and done she turned into hobby lobby. She must have read your post.

Revi said...

I was blessed with mild weather here in Texas to do this project yesterday! This paint is extra runny AND extra smelly, so it MUST be done outside. I am still going to try and get the lamps covered better inside today - more mild weather. :) They are looking good, but more transparent than I expected. I may end up giving them a coat on the outside and then clear coating them all.

Cathy said...

OH I can't wait to get some of that paint and play with it! Actually I have a little project - A few years ago CVS had all these painted wooden jewelry boxes on sale. They had mirrors mounted on top them like little dressing tables. I bought a couple of them to repaint with fun colors and designs. In sanding down the original paint on the frames, I accidentally scratched the mirrors, and had no idea how to repair or disguise the scratches. This paint might do just the trick and give the pieces a little more "flava." Will let you know how they turn out!

Revi said...

Do let us know! I would be interested to know if it covers the scratches, and how it might look with mirror underneath! I'm going to try it on a variety of other materials if I have some paint left after finishing my lamps. I'll let you know how that works as well.

Shirley said...

Beautiful! I'll have to try that. I've never seen that paint. But then like you said it's in a small can. Hmmm. I was in Hobby Lobby today!

Dusty Coyote said...

Oh wow, beautiful!! I'm loving all these mercury glass posts. Your candlesticks and glasses look fantastic. The glasses seem more transparent than the candlesticks??? Looking forward to seeing the lamps and the prize(?)! Hmmmm...I might have to try this.

Anita at Cedar Hill said...

I love mercury glass too. Can't wait to see your lamp. Love the candlesticks.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I love this technique and I'm marking your blog in my favs! What a great idea! ♥

Unknown said...

you are invited to follow my blog

Becky@Beyond The Picket Fence said...

Love it--I have been looking for it as well, no Hobby Lobby here :(. The smaller can is a good clue as to what to look for.

Jemmmma said...

Great job! I'm never sick of seeing mercury glass tutorials! Found you over at Savvy Southern Styles linky party.


Tricia said...

Oh, I loved those PB lamps the minute I saw them. I don't know if I have it in me to craft up my own though :)

Anonymous said...

Fantastic. I love the effect revi. I did a couple of them sometime back and they are fun.

Thanks for stopping by and for your sweet comment. You made my day. You know, it's never about how good one is. It's about the fact that its reaching out to people and by a quality we are connected to so many talented people. I heart blogs.

Love, rukmini


Revi I have awarded you the Liebster Blog award! Stop by My blog to pick it up!
Your blog is so uplifting and informational. I love it.

Blessed Serendipity said...

Mercury glass is beautiful but can be pricey. I LOVE how your candlesticks turned out - gorgeous!


Katherines Corner said...

Lovely. I have pinterest on my radar but haven't visited yet. Thank you for joining us at the Thursday Favorites Hop and for sharing it with your readers too. Wishing you a happy weekend! xo P.S. Have you entered the Pink Poodle giveaway yet?

likeschocolate said...

Good job! What a great idea! Thanks for sharing!

Honey at 2805 said...

Your candle sticks are beautiful! I have the paint, but haven't used it yet. Maybe I'll wait to see you lamps first!

Thank you for sharing your project at Potpourri Friday!

debbie refresh restyle said...

Love it, the only prizes that I've found lately in cracker jacks have been little paper odds and ends, nothing cool like I used to get! Or maybe I just thought it was cool at the time :) thanks for the visit, hope you'll come back soon...I have a few addictions too, coffee, pinterest, fb, blogging. Please don't hold it against me,

Shabby chic Sandy said...

I have the paint but haven't been able to master it yet. It is hard! Any suggestions would be helpful:)

karen@somewhatquirky said...

Hi Revi, I bought a can of this paint and have tried at least 7 times to get the look I want on a vase. Luckily the paint washes right out after being in contact with water for a matter of minutes. I was fairly successful using it inside some glass sconces that were clear but made from that glass with the bubbles in it (blanking on what that is called right now). My guess is that no matter how nice these fakes look in photography they just don't look like mercury glass, or the better imitations available in stores.

Anonymous said...

When spraying the inside of a glass object, I use a coat of black paint as a backing to give it that old mercury glass finish. That will also fix the transparency problem.