Frosted Glass, Five Ways

By Kate Riley September 23, 2009

Lately, I’ve been inspired by several bloggers to embellish some glass objects with frosting.  What finally motivated me were these etched glass wine bottles I swooned over at my favorite shop in St. Helena called ‘Vintage Home’.

vintage home wine bottles 

Not only did I want to enhance some decor, I also had a practical purpose.  I needed to transform my glass bath cabinet doors from a clear to opaque surface.  So last week I grabbed some of Rustoleum’s ‘Frosted Glass’ spray paint to conduct some experiments.  In the end, I was pleasantly surprised and delighted with the results. 

I must say that this post was almost titled, “Somebody Stop Me”.  When I’m armed with a product that makes me giddy, I need someone to hold my arms tightly against my body, look deep into my eyes, and say to me:   “PUT DOWN THE CAN.  STEP AWAY FROM THE FROSTED GLASS SPRAY PAINT.”   I didn’t stop using the stuff until the can was empty.  And all of the other glass in my home is now breathing a sigh of relief. 

Here are the five glass objects I enhanced with (yet another) can of spray paint. 

First, I made these water carafes for my Mister and me. 

his and hers frosted glass carafe

They were simple glass carafes that I picked up for a few dollars at a thrift store a few months ago.  I taped them off with alphabet stickers, painter’s tape, and paper towels.

his and hers taped

They remind me so much of the bottles from the shop in St. Helena.  I think they’d make a darling wedding gift.  Or you could monogram just one for yourself. 

hers big butt

They’re kind of Pottery Barnish.  Or Crate and Barrelish.  Like this bottle below.

 oil drizzler crate and barrel Crate and Barrel oil drizzler


Next victim: my laundry soap jar.  

laundry room frosted glass jar 

My coffee bean jar was not spared.

coffee bean frosted glass jar


Then I transformed this vase into an elegant candleholder. 

before and after frosted glass


I applied some stickers, and used painter’s tape to cover the top.

frosted glass spray paint

The new and improved version adds so much ambiance

frosted glass fall tablescape


Finally, the practical application.  I gave these previously clear glass bath cabinet doors a less transparent view of the interior.  Nothing too exciting inside anyway:  shampoo, soap, hairspray, yada, yada, yada. 

frosted glass cabinet after

There’s a botanical theme going on in this space.

botanical shower curtain

So I removed the doors and used flower shaped stickers to form this simple linear pattern on the inside of the glass, which will help it last in a steam filled space.

frosted glass cabinet door 

All of my glass was transformed with ‘Frosted Glass’ spray paint on the outside of my glass objects – except for the bathroom cabinet.  That was an inside job.  I liked how easy it was to apply, and how it dries in 10 minutes.  And it’s actually hand washable with mild soap and a soft rag.  But you can’t put it in the dishwasher.  And if you completely hate your pattern, it comes off with mineral spirits or paint thinner (according to the can.)

Many others have used acid based ‘Etching Cream’ (available at craft stores) to achieve this same effect. 

Take a look at some of these fabulous projects:

Etched Glass Storage Jars by Martha

etched glass storage jars martha


More pantry jars by Pink of Perfection

pink of perfection


sunset magazine etching

Etched jars via Sunset Magazine


Frosted glass table by The Purple Pea



Frosted Glass Table Top by Amanda at Serenity Now


Etched glass silhouette mirror by Living with Lindsay


Etched glass bathroom window by Martha

etched glass window martha


Frosted Glass House Number by Creative Glass Guild:

creative glass guild 

Frosted Glass Bookcase by Craftynest

crafynest frosted glass 

Sea glass frosted luminaries, available at Charming Weddings

sea glass luminary my wedding favors


Red polka dot frosted glass luminary by CandleLand

red frosted glass by candleland


And this loveliness by Uppercase Living:

uppercase living monogram

There are so many creative possibilities with either Frosted Glass spray paint or Etching Cream.  Perfume bottles, wine glasses, mirrors, hurricanes.  And frosted snowflake ornaments at Christmas !   I can’t wait. 

I hope you’re just as inspired as I am from all of these projects. 


  1. I just love that idea. I don´t think that we have that kind of spray here in Portugal. It´s very sad …. Thanks for the tips.

  2. This is why I love blogs. I had NEVER heard of Frosted Glass spray paint, but now I want to do it to all the glass in my house! So cute thanks for sharing!!

  3. I just bought some of that last week and frosted the windows on my front door to replace the curtains that were there. Worked great but I didn’t like the effect – too stark without curtains. Now you’ve inspired me to try it on other stuff.

  4. I love it – and seems much less daunting than the etching creams (for me, anyways!). My spray paint repertoire seems to be growing on a daily basis!!! Thanks for the inspiration, as always!

  5. This is one of my favorite posts!! I am off to the store to go buy myself a can. I am SO excited about all the possibilities! Thanks for sharing.

  6. What is the durability of the bathroom window with tempature changes? I love the idea and I am in the middle of a MAJOR bathroom renovation and the window is calling for the frosting.

  7. Wow thanks for the inspiration, I didn’t know that there’s spray paint for this. This will definitely be my next project :) Please keep us update on how long the designs last since you said it can be clean with soap and water.

  8. You had to get me started … I have used both the spray paint and the etching cream in the past and you’re right – it is addictive. You reminded me, though, that I have some glass votives waiting for me to pretty them up ….

  9. I was thisclose to using it on my dining centerpiece!! I’m dying to try it somewhere! These are lovely.


    You have no idea how long I’ve been contemplating this project. I am hosting a Chili Cook Off in a few weeks and wanted to do this to some pint glasses, but I was sure that etching cream was
    not worht the effort. This spray looks perfect!!! One question, do you think these would be ok in a dishwasher, or just hand washed?

  11. Fantastic…I love this. I have gotten so many ideas and learned so much since I started surfing blogs. Thanks for sharing.

  12. OMG!!! I love it!! I now know what I’m going to make my sister for Christmas!! Thanks for all the great blogs you do!!!

  13. I especially love the idea of the vase turned into candle holder. I have lots of vases from flower arrangement gifts stored away. This sounds like an easy way to revamp them and putting them to use again :)

  14. I had no idea this stuff existed! I have got to go get me some, I love every single one of your projects. Thanks so much for staring!!

  15. That is just too cool! No wonder you used the entire can…there are so many neat projects to do with that stuff. Thanks for the ideas!


  16. I may have to try that. I did a post last month on trying to etch a glass vase with etching cream. I followed the directions on the container, but the result was very blotchy. Later, on Martha Stewart’s site I saw that you had to apply an extremely smooth coat. (The picture on the container I used was just slapped on haphazardly.)

  17. I hate the etching cream and acid stuff. I swore a long time ago I’d never use it again. However, I do love the spray stuff! I was planning on posting about it soon. Love all of your “victims.” :)

  18. That stuff is genius! I’ve been trying to decide what to do with the window in my bathroom (it looks out onto my back patio-why would they do that?!) and I think this will be a perfect solution! I love what you did with it, especially the coffee bean jar. Too cute!

  19. One more thing to put on my list of things to try. No one told me that blogging was going to be this much fun!

  20. Wow, I didn’t know about this product. You made some beautiful items.

    I definitely need some for a pane of glass above my front door; folk in the street can see through that and straight up into the master bedroom!
    Now, who will lend me a 10 foot ladder?? :)

  21. What??? I had NO idea what this stuff did, although I have passed it 5,000 times in the store. Holy cow! YAY! So cute!

  22. I had no idea such a spray painted existed!! I’ve already started coming up with some ideas…can’t wait to try some. Thanks!!!

  23. I love it. I’ve been jonesing for something to spice up my ctop jars with flour and sugar, flax seed and tea bags. Maybe I’ll try this!!

  24. To Elaine: I live in North Dakota and used this on the lower pane of the double-hung windows in my second-floor bathroom. We have major temperature extremes and my design has survived pretty well. There are a few spot that could use another shot of the the paint, as the condensation running down the window panes has worn a bit of the crisp edges off (I used painters tape to make a frame within the pane). I did mine about 15 months ago and plan to do more in an upcoming basement bathroom we’re remodeling.

  25. Oh my! Another thing to obsess over! I love the coffee jar – “wake up” very clever! :) Your bathroom cabinets are gorgeous.

    I think you should start posting MULTIPLE times per day! ;)

  26. I love this! I was thinking of applying some type of frosted layer to our front door (it’s all glass), but I think I may give this a try instead.

  27. What a great idea! Thanks for sharing! I can’t wait to go out and get some and try this for myself! A trip to Goodwill is in order. It seems to be a weekly thing lately!

  28. I never thought they carried a glass froster in a spray can, awesomeness. I need to start walking slower in the home improvement stores!
    Thanks for all the great ideas, keep ’em coming.

  29. Love this idea Kate! Your projects turned out great! Now if you ever find a can of spray paint that can turn plain glass into BEVELED glass, lemme know. I’ve been wanting the one plain glass door in my kitchen cabinets to magically transform to a beveled glass, and for some reason just staring at it for the past 3 years isn’t doing the trick.

  30. Your post made me laugh! I know the feeling of being giddy with product in hand :). Great project. I love all of the items you enhanced.


  31. I love this! And it really sounds quite easy to do. You have really great pieces that you’ve made. Thanks so much for sharing!

  32. Every project was awesome! Like so many other readers, I had never heard of frosted glass spray paint…unlimited possibilities…and soooo timely…I recently caught MY CHIHUAHUA DRINKING FROM MY WATER GLASS on my night stand…eewww….so I was thinking some kind of carafe with the cup placed upside down on top would be a great solution….this will jazz it up a lot!

  33. We used frosted glass spray paint on the sidelight windows next to our front door. I didn’t want curtains, and my hubby hated that people could see in. It worked perfectly. Love your cabinet doors!

  34. Kate, I can’t remember if I’ve commented on this one, but I know I saw it before I went out of town. Thanks so much for the link to my blog. :) I love ALL of your inspiration photos, and the his and hers turned out too cute!

  35. Thanks for posting one from Uppercase Living too! That one isn’t spray paint, it’s actually a vinyl that you apply onto the glass. Cool huh? Great job with your projects — I am so NOT good at spray paint like you!

  36. Wow! I think I love you — or hate you — well, probably love. How easy it would be to buy colored glass and then frost it — beautiful!

  37. Very happy to see that they make this paint and what great results!!!! wonderful and you didn’t over do it at all!! all those things needed it for sure…I might need three cans…….looks addictive

  38. This is definitely a project i will be trying out very soon, i didn’t know they had it in spray paint, i think it’ll be alot easier than the paste. Thanks for the idea & inspirations.

  39. Wow! I love your site! I am going from post to post – your creative flair is inspiring me and your writing is lovely. I can so relate to your comment about needing someone to hold your arms and tell you to put the paint down when you find something you like. When I got my first good saw I went on a rampage until even chair legs held their breath when I came in the room. Very well put together site with great ideas. Can’t wait to use the frosting on my bedroom windows to create privacy without diminishing the natural light. Thanks for the ideas!

  40. I have done this in the past to make personalized Christmas gifts with my husband. Together with my husband’s family we decided to do a “handmade Christmas” It was an idea to help us to save money and put our talents forward. Together my husband and I each designed different images that we felt represented each of our family members. We hand drew the images onto contact paper, cut them out, and applied the contact paper to simple tall drinking glasses. We used etching cream to create a permanent picture. Each family member now has their own personal drinking glasses. It cost us less than $30 to create a thoughtful and useful gifts for 8 people!

  41. Hysterical!!!!
    I love all your creations and I can sympathize…I am the same. Once I find something cool, I go into overkill mode!
    Great blog!

  42. It comes in spray paint form?!?! I was shying away from the etching cream because I wasn’t how much I’d like the look and I didn’t want to pay full price for an experiment…now I can try it for the price of spray paint!

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