Mercury Glass Decor- How to Make Your Own

Dec 4, 2012 by

I love Mercury Glass decor items for the home.  Not only do they add a little bling during the Christmas season but I believe that they are items that can be used year round.  The texture and shimmery finish it provides are what makes mercury glass highly collectable.   This Christmas, I decided that I wanted to incorporate mercury glass items into my decor.  As I visited my favorite stores, I quickly realized that this decision would totally hike up my budget. Check out this Z Gallerie Mercury Hurricane Vase that they are selling for $49.95.  I think it’s just gorgeous.  Put a pillar candle in there and I just know that it would quickly transform the ambiance of any room.


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source:  Z Gallerie

What about this Pottery Barn Lidded Box that is selling for $24.50?  I would love to put my little knick knacks in there.

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source: Pottery Barn

Here’s another picture from Pottery Barn of a mercury bowl and cake stand that I think are just darling.  They are no longer available according to the website but I wanted to post it for eye candy.

img62o Mercury Glass Decor  How to Make Your Own source: Pottery Barn

Just the two items above would cost me $75!  Plus, when I said I wanted to incorporate mercury glass into my Christmas decor, I meant I wanted to include it SUBSTANTIALLY.   That’s when this amazing product came into my life!  During one of my trips to OSH, I was introduced to it by one of the workers there.  I never would have thought that a young man in his early 20′s would give such valuable home decorating information.  As one of my previous posts states, Never Judge a Book by its Cover.


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No, it’s not the Pantene Detangling Spray (although it’s valuable in its own right).  I am talking about the Krylon Looking Glass Mirror Like Paint.  He raved about how he has tried this product on a project before and he loved how it gave the mirror like finish.  I quickly googled this product and I found tutorial galores on how to make mercury glass items using this product.  The method I used is what I found to be the easiest. Here’s what you need to make your very own mercury glass decor items:

  1. Krylon Looking Glass Mirror Like Paint
  2. Spray bottle (my old Pantene detangling bottle)
  3. Equal parts vinegar and water ( I used 1/3 cup water and 1/3 cup vinegar)
  4. Paper Towels
  5. Gloves
  6. Old newspaper or Drop cloth
  7. Mask ( I did not use one)

Note:  I did not get pictures of me spraying the items because I found it difficult with gloves and spray paint in both hands.  I will try to be as detailed as possible.

Follow these steps:

1.  Gather all of your materials and make sure you work in an open area.  I simply looked around the house for potential items that would look wonderful transformed into mercury glass.  I found a vase that came with flowers given to me after one of my babies was born. I also have votive candle holders that are just, well, a little plain and a lidded bowl (which I taught mimicked the Pottery barn picture I posted above).  I ended up not using the 2 larger vases as they were wedding gifts.  I DID NOT want to risk the giver of said vases to recognized I’ve spray painted their gifts.  Besides, a girl can never have enough clear vases.


  IMG 3159 Mercury Glass Decor  How to Make Your Own

2.  Make sure that your items are all clean and free of debris.  In a spray bottle, mix the vinegar and water and shake vigorously.

3.  Shake the Krylon Looking Glass Mirror Like Paint vigorously.  I mean, you need to give it about 5 minutes of vigorous shaking.  It is also a good idea to shake the bottle in between sprays.

4.  If you read the instructions, it states that you should paint the inside of the glass item.  I did follow directions but with the biggest items (2 large vases), I rebelled and sprayed the outside instead (more on that later).  With the spray can about a foot away, spray the inside of your item with quick bursts and turn.  The paint comes out really thin so quick bursts are better.  Keep spraying until the item is completely covered with one coat.

5. This paint dries really fast.  You will see it go on kind of cloudy and then it gives a very shiny finish as it dries.  I would say it takes about a couple of minutes to dry.  I gave my items a few coats, to my liking.

6.  This is where the fun (for me) begins.  If you look at the pictures above of the mercury items from Pottery Barn and Z Gallerie, the finish has a cracked, almost damaged look to them, which I love!  After your item is completely dry, get your spray bottle filled with equal parts vinegar and water.  You will then lightly mist directly onto the paint and wait about a minute.

7.  Spray the paper towel with some of the vinegar/water solution and slowly and gently rub the inside of the item in circular motion.  The vinegar basically breaks the paint apart leaving you with that gorgeous crackled effect.  Experiment with different pressures to achieve different effects.

8.  Distress the glass as much or as little as you want.

9.  Once you achieve your desired look, I highly recommend that you spray one last coat of Krylon Looking Glass Mirror like Paint so that the distressed parts are not to bare.

I used one can to paint all of my new pretties…

IMG 3313 Mercury Glass Decor  How to Make Your Own

Doesn’t it look pretty?  I’d say she comes real close to looking like the Pottery Barn lidded box, don’t you think?

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Remember the Z Gallerie Hurricane Vase on the picture above for $49.95?  This is my version of that hurricane vase.  I loved how it turned out.  It looks so gorgeous when I light the pillar candle inside.

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My new votives.  It looks really cool when the tea lights are lit at night!

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With these 2 large vases, I had to spray the outside because they are huge and the necks are tapered.  The paint would not have sufficiently covered the inside.  I think they turned out gorgeous, don’t you?

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Here is how our mantle looks at night when the candles are lit.  My picture doesn’t do it justice but I love how they turned out.

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I’ve learned that shopping around your house, you may discover that you have items you can breathe new life into.  I’ve had those vases and votive candle holders for so long, just collecting dust in my cabinets.  With a little creativity, I was able to bring the bling I wanted in my Christmas decor without spending an arm and a leg.  What about you?  Do you have any items in your home you want to breathe new life into.  I say, Go For It!

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