Fabulous people go to lots of fabulous parties during the most wonderful time of the year, and unless you were born independently wealthy or inexcusably rude, you may find that your need for host gifts puts some stress on your already strained pocketbook. (P.S. If you actually carry something you call a pocketbook, I kinda love you.) With this quick, easy project, you can dazzle your hosts all December long without breaking the bank
These coasters are quick, fun, and completely customizable.
All you need is to make a set is:
- vinyl or contact paper
- permanent marker
- scissors or X-acto knife
- etching cream ( I used Armour Etch, available online or from Hobby Lobby in the aisle with the stained glass supplies)
- cotton swabs or a small disposable brush to apply cream
- latex gloves
- glazed ceramic tiles (available from hardware stores for under .50 cents a tile)
- Felt or thin cork for the bottom of the tile
Begin by washing and drying the tiles to get rid of fingerprints or any dust on the surface.
Using your pencil, draw a simple design on to the paper backing of the contact paper, keeping in mind that you are working in reverse so whatever you cut out will be a mirror image. This is especially critical if you are planning on using text of any sort, because you’ll have to write backwards. In my samples, I’ll be using the wonderstrange eyeball:
You’ll notice I used a permanent marker to outline my cutting lines. I also filled in the part of the image I wanted to be sure not to cut in to. The negative space is what matters here, so pay careful attention to those small inside bits when cutting.
Peel the paper backing off the contact paper and place the paper on the tile. Smooth it down, making sure you get all the air bubbles pressed away from the inner edges. I found out that you can lift the contact paper up and move it several times without hurting anything, so if it looks off center, just re-position it.
Put on the latex gloves and open the etching cream. Remember this is glass-eating acid here folks, so keep it off your skin. Happily, it is a very thick cream and not at all runny, so you should not have trouble using it safely.
Using a Q-Tip, spread a thick layer of the etching cream over the exposed areas of tile that will make up your image.
WOW! You have seven free minutes. You should totally go browse Here.
Put your gloves back on and use a cotton swab to scrape the excess cream back in to the jar because (BONUS!!!) this stuff is re-usable! That means you can even make coasters for people who don’t invite you to their fancy-pants parties…and just think how crummy they are going to feel then!
Rinse the tile thoroughly with cool water.
Peel off the contact paper and discard .
While the tile is wet it will look as if nothing happened…and you’ll be sad. BUT, as soon as you dry it off, you will be happy to see your totally cool new coaster shining back at you!
You can paint the edges of the tile with acrylic paint or you can leave the edges plain. If you do choose to paint the edges the easiest way is to use some slightly thinned acrylic paint and let it soak in to the ceramic surface. Wipe any excess paint from the top surface with a wet paper towel before it dries. Because the ceramic is porous it will soak up the paint and there should be no need to seal it, the goal is to stain the edge, not to get a thick layer of paint.
Cut your felt or thin cork to fit the back of the tile. Glue it to the back of the coaster.
A set of four slipped in to a cellophane bag or tied with a piece of ribbon or twine makes a wonderful gift that is sure to get you invited over for drinks again and again!