These diy mercury glass candle holders are very easy to make! Just make sure to apply very thin coats. I tried the method of spraying a mixture of equal parts vinegar + water in between coats, and dabbing with a paper towel to blotch a weathered look. I just applied two coats of paint, which seems enough to give the look while stretching the use of each spray can last for a few dozen votive holders (depending on how big your containers are).
Here are the results:
I used these glasses from Ikea that had a faux crystal look. A few things to note: this project has variations of all flavors and levels of complexity (there are methods using silver leaf to give a layered look, others suggest etching the glass with monogams and so on), so it really depends on what you will be using it for. Does it replace real mercury glass? No, but it’s pretty darn close. If you’re making these for a wedding or party, give fewer coats enough to achieve a mirrored look and use on cheap glassware at thrift stores or restaurant suppliers to help lower the cost of making them in bulk. You can also find real mercury glass votives for sale at Recycle Your Wedding first if the DIY route isn’t your thing. I recommend investing more time and paint on larger statement pieces, like glass urns and shapely vases – these are much more expensive to buy the real deal and are more noticeable than just small votives. Hope this helps!
Updated August 2, 2013.
The Everyday Bride recreated vintage mercury glass votives by using a spray paint called Looking Glass, by Krylon. This spray paint can be found at any craft store, such as Michael’s. Buying a few cans of spray paint is more cost effective than buying real vintage mercury glass pieces and the results are virtually the same. What a glamorous way to jazz up those ol’ boring clear glass votives!