How to Make Etched Glass Christmas Ornaments

What You'll Need
Glass ornaments or 2-sided mirrored ornaments.
Stencil of your design
Liquid etching cream
Rubber gloves
Paper towels

Etched glass Christmas ornaments are not difficult to make and offer a huge amount of 'wow appeal' to your Christmas decorations.  They make wonderful gifts for your family and friends.


  • Cricut cutter
  • Box knife (if you're making your own stencil)
  • Contact paper or other sticky backed paper (if you're making your own stencil)

Please Note: Ready-made stencils are available at your local craft store where you purchase the etching creme and other supplies. A ready-made stencil may be easier to use for a beginner. Keep in mind the size of your ornament when you purchase a stencil.

Step 1 - Creating a Stencil

If you decide to make your own stencil, and you're using a rounded ornament, keep your design small to avoid edges that protrude. The etching creme may ooze under these edges and create a fuzzy image. You want your design to be crisp and clean as with any stencil project. Keep the same idea in mind if you are using a Cricut cutting machine. 

Make your design and apply it to the ornament, smoothing out all air bubbles and making sure it lays flat as you go. You can gently use a rubber spatula or wooden cuticle tool to achieve this.

Step 2 - Applying Etching Cream

Read all directions on the etching cream before you begin and always follow those as some liquids are different from others. I would suggest a ventilated room. Wear your rubber gloves and work over a surface covered with newspapers or a plastic sheet of some kind. Be sure all areas not covered by your stencil are covered well with your etching cream. Leave it on for the amount of time instructed by the manufacturer. Also use their instructions for removal.

If you have decided to use the 2-sided mirrored ornaments, you will then repeat these instructions for the other side of the ornament. While these ornaments are double the work, they are beautiful when finished. If you are making them for gifts, you might want to do a Christmas design on one side and perhaps your family name initial, or the initial of the family you're presenting it to on the other side.

Step 3 - Finishing Your Ornaments

After your ornaments have dried, very gently remove your stencil and your beautiful design will appear. Add a ribbon for hanging and your ornament is ready for use. The hollow glass balls that are popular may be filled with potpourri, rose hips, seeds or other such things for background color. Other ideas would be confetti, pieces of ribbon or cut up bits of fabric.

Ideas For Display

These ornaments are eye catchers and if displayed properly can give you a very elegant, opulent feel to your Christmas decor.  Try hanging them in your entry way or over your mantle from different lengths of ribbon and secured with a full bow. They are also very effective hung in front of a mirror or above candles.