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Life Happens: Making personalized wine glasses
DIY wine glasses will be the answer to your gifting worries
Published 1/23/2012
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I admit I am terrible at buying gifts. Whether it is for the holidays or a friend’s birthday I always give myself anxiety trying to decipher the charm and emotional worth of the presents I pick. Generally, I believe well made do-it-yourself gifts are more personable and, most of the time, much cheaper.

Another thing I must admit is that I just finished gifting for the 2011 holiday season. My self-doubt got the best of me and I could not develop a thoughtful gift for my three best friends. Taking into account our favorite activities I decided to personalize a set of white wine glasses and shot glasses for each one of them.

The following DIY project could be used in many ways. I personalized four glasses with the initials of my three best friends and I, but you could use this as a house-warming gift using the giftees initial on all four as well.


Materials you’ll need:

  •  4 wine glasses (White, Red, or champagne flutes would all work)
  •  4 shot glasses (I choose tall thin double shot glasses)
  •  Martha Stewart glitter paint in desired color (I used Smokey Quartz)
  •  Martha Stewart satin paint in desired color (I used Beetle Black)
  •  1 thin, round paintbrush
  •  1 thick flat paintbrush, or 1 foam pouncer
  •  2 paper cups or old Tupperware bowls for the paint
  •  Masking or Scotch tape


Martha Stewart products are not needed for this project; you could use any brand of glitter and satin paint. I use the Martha Stewart brand because it is easily available in our area (Michaels craft store) and all of the products are of high quality.


By Lillian Nolan

Before you start, make sure all of your glasses are clean and dry.

I found white wine glasses for around $4 a piece and the shot glasses for $2 a piece at World Market. I’m sure you could find packs of matching ones at Wal-Mart for around the same price. If you want to take a cheaper route the Goodwill or Salvation Army will have an assortment of stemware, but there will be no guarantee that they will match.  

Begin with a thin layer of glitter paint over the entire surface that you want to be glittered using the thick, flat paintbrush or pouner. I choose the base, stem and about a third of the way up the glass (up to the widest part of the glass). Don’t worry about the glitter not being completely even, this is mostly uncontrollable with this kind of paint and you will be adding a few more layers which will give you opportunities to even out the glitter later.

It is important that you let each layer of paint dry before you add the next.

In the meantime, tape up your shot glasses. I choose to only glitter the bottom inch of the glasses, this made it easier for me to fit the initial on the small glass. You will want the tape to be completely even around the whole glass. So, take the time to line up both edges of the tape, you will thank yourself later for it.

Glitter the bottom of the shot glass with its first layer. By now the first layer on your wine glasses should be dry. I used a gradient effect with the glitter on my glasses by flipping the glasses over on a hard surface and adding a lot of paint around the base, then slowly dragging the paint downward so that the glitter ‘fades’ up the glass.

Add as many layers to your glasses as you like. I found three layers were plenty on the wine glasses and I only needed two on the shot glasses.

After all of the glitter layers are dry flip your glasses right side up and start to plan the initials for the glasses. I choose to use a capital letter on the wine glasses and a lower-case letter on the shot glasses, the letters should about a half an inch from the top of the glitter and about the same from the top of the glass.

If penmanship is not your strong suit then feel free to use a stencil; the Martha Steward brand of stencils are very good and there are also countless online recourses for font and calligraphy.

By Lillian Nolan

I used a sharpie to draw the letter on the glass before I took the paint to it. Once I had drawn the letter I decided to commit and started painting with the small, round paintbrush, because of this I can tell you that if you act fast enough both the paint and the sharpie will come off with a damp paper towel. I erased and repainted quite a few times on my first one before I liked the outcome.

I did the same with all of the shot glasses, using the sharpie and paint method.

I set the eight glasses aside to dry completely overnight.

The glue advertises to be permanent and dishwasher safe after 28 days of curing. After all this work I would be sad to see the decorations disappear after a run in the dishwasher, so I will be hand washing these glasses. Which I will recommend for all of your stemware, glittered or not, in order to preserve their quality over time.

As for gifting these beauties, I nested each shot glass in a wine glass and wrapped them up in bright colored tissue paper, then tied the top with curling ribbon. All of my friends loved their glasses and my anxiety was not needed after all.

Good luck doing-it-yourself!


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