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Mercury Glass Votive Tutorial

 Mercury glass, also known as silvered glass, contains neither mercury nor silver. It’s actually clear glass, mold-blown into double-walled shapes and coated on the inside with a silvering formula, which is inserted through a small hole that is then sealed with a plug.

If you would like to create your own mercury glass pieces, then this post is for you! First you need a glass item. If you have a dollar store near you, you can pick up so many glass items on the dollar.

Items you will need:

  • Rustoleum Mirror Effect
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Paper Towel
  • Spray Bottle with Water (must have mist spray)
  • Glass piece

$8 sounds expensive but I have been using the same can on at least a dozen pieces

Lay down some newspaper or something to protect your work surface. Be sure that your glass piece is clean!  Tip: The alcohol is used to remove the painted surface if you aren’t happy with it. So don’t worry if it doesn’t come out just the way you like, it can be wiped away, and you can start over.

This is the piece I am making over:

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To start, using your spray bottle, set on ‘mist‘, I then lightly mist the inside of votives Tip: You want beads of water to form on the glass surface (You will see small droplets of the water, do not remove these droplets!

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Now, you quickly follow with a light coat of looking glass spray paint . You do a quick spray. Why??  The water droplets won’t allow the paint to adhere to the glass creating the mottled, mercury glass finish. Don’t worry if some of the spray paint and water run down the sides and pool in the bottom, that’s normal.  Wait five minutes for the paint to dry on the votives’ sides, then carefully dab away excess water and spray paint from the bottom with a paper towel, being careful not to hit the votives’ sides . Remember, quick, short fine mist spraying on both the paint and the water.

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I continued coating the interior of votives with first a light mist of water followed by a light coat of paint for a total of three to five coats or until you’re satisfied with the votives’ silvered appearance .

Once the last coat of paint has fully dried, use a paper towel saturated with rubbing alcohol to clean up any overspray on the outside of votives.

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The votives look pretty with those led dancing candles look like this. I love these new kinds of dancing wicks. They look real and the wicks move. Instead of the ones like these that I have used in the past.
This is how they looked at night:

I had just hung a orb that has 6 votives above the patio table, thinking perhaps I should try something else. I purchased 4 artificial succulents from a dollar store and stuck one in each votive.

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If you are a beginner and feel uneasy about this, you can do another way. This is good for practice. And remember, you can always remove paint with alcohol and a paper towel. So what is the idea?  Instead of spraying the inside, spray the outside. Use the same technique with the water and paint. It will look almost the same, but so much easier, and a good way to practice. I created several pieces spraying the outside of the piece:

Rustoleum also makes the Mirror Effect in Gold:

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I did these candle holders in the silver:

and also this vase…

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I hope you enjoyed this post, and you were inspired to try this yourself. It is easy, and so hard to mess up!

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