How to Give an Antique Look to Glass Bottles

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If you love the aged, antique look of cracked and tarnished finishes on old decorative glass and metal ornaments, you can easily give that same look to any glass bottle. By selecting bottles with interesting shapes and treating them using common art supplies, you can spread some antique elegance throughout every room in your home. Just start collecting bottles and follow the instructions below to begin.

Things You'll Need

  • Glass bottles of any shape, size or color
  • Two different colors of acrylic paint
  • Liquid crackling medium
  • Small paintbrush
  • Paper towels
  • Water
  • Collect several glass bottles by any means you wish. There are many interestingly shaped bottles containing condiments, alcohol, jellies, bottled water and soda that can be washed and saved for decorating. You can also find cheap bottles at large craft stores and pottery warehouses.

  • Thoroughly wash and dry all bottles with hot water and paper towels.

  • Select which color of will be the top coat and which will be the bottom coat. When you're done painting, the top coat color will be the dominant color of the bottle, with the bottom coat color showing through in several cracks in the paint. The best effect is usually achieved when the lighter of the two colors is used as the top coat.

  • Using a small paintbrush, paint the entire bottle with an even layer of bottom coat color. If you don't intend to put a bottle stopper or cork in the bottle, you may want to paint down inside the neck of the bottle as far as a couple of inches. Rinse the brush immediately and allow the paint to dry completely.

  • When the paint is dry, use the same paintbrush to apply a layer of the crackle medium to the entire painted area. Keep in mind as you paint that thicker coats create larger cracks in the paint, while thinner coats create thinner cracks. You can vary the coat thickness over the surface of the bottle to achieve a random looking pattern. Rinse the paintbrush right away when you're finished and allow this coat to dry completely.

  • When the crackle medium has dried, use a paintbrush to apply a very thin layer of the top coat color to the entire treated area. Be sure to brush each part of the bottle with only a single stroke; if you brush the same area multiple times or get too much paint on the brush to begin with, the cracking effect won't form properly. Once the entire area has been covered with a thin, even coat, rinse the brush and allow the bottle to completely dry.

  • Use the bottle as a decorative element after the last coat dries. Windowsills and areas with lots of light add to the antique look of the finish.

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