Glass Block Tutorial

These blocks are perfect as nightlights in the kitchen, baby room, or the wine cellar to light up that private midnight wine-tasting soiree (I'm not the only one who does that, am I?)

The first step is to drill a hole in the glass block. I can best describe this as a magical process about which I know nothing.

I bring home a box of blocks from Lowe's; my husband takes them out to his shop, works his magic and delivers them to my studio with holes drilled into the bottom of each of them. I think diamond drill bits are part of the process, but that's just a guess.

Were I ever to ever learn how to drill holes, I'd probably be expected to do it myself. Better that I save my energy for the vastly more important work of stamping.

Here are the rest of the materials:
Christmas lights - small strand that you can stuff into the block
Mulberry paper
Stazon black ink pad
Other ink pads
Stamp of choice - I used a grape set from CTMH
Liquid Glass (CTMH)
Water brush
Glass of wine

I cut out two pieces of mulberry paper slightly larger than the block.

I use the water brush to paint a water line just inside the ridge of the block. Then, I tear the paper along the water line. This makes a nice feathery edge

Next, use a water resistant ink - like Stazon to stamp the image on both pieces of mulberry paper.

Stamp with wild abandon, randomly scattering the image across the surface. If you're worried about mistakes and fear of imperfection causes you to hesitate, refill your wine glass and try again. Mulberry paper is cheap. Now is the time to claim artistic courage.

Now for the fun part - coloring. I do this in different ways. This stamp set is two-part; so there are outline stamps and inside stamps. When possible I stamped the inside of the image using the appropriate color of ink.

Sometimes I use the water brush to pick up some ink from the pad and use it to delicately paint in the image. Mulberry paper is quite absorbent and you will probably have to use less of the damp ink than you would guess. I started with brush in the center of the grape, and let the color wick around until it filled up inside the lines.

Oh yeah, it's messy. Be sure to have a good absorbent pad under your mulberry paper.

In fact, the pursuit of artistic courage is messy, often involving ink that strays beyond the Stazon border. (maybe we need Staz In - hahahaha)

Anyway, to soften of the edges, I use a sponge with chocolate ink to "antique" the image.

This next step began as an attempt to hide some particularly messy coloring, but I liked the outcome so well that I use it on almost all the blocks now.

I spray the entire square with adhesive and sprinkle with a really fine, clear glitter. The resulting subtle sparkle gives the final project a polished look.

Spread liquid glass, or something similar evenly across the surface of the block using a sponge applicator.

A couple of times I've adhered the mulberry paper upside down (remember the hole for the lights is on the bottom of the block) Grrr - hate when that happens.

Finally, stuff the lights in the hole.

Voila - a completed lamp. Okay, it isn't complete. It still needs a bow. I'll try and post the bow making tutorial tomorrow.

Happy Crafting!


  1. These are beautiful!!! Love the idea but sure need the Bow tutorial

  2. I love your glass block. What type of ink did you use to color your images, waterbase or something else.


  3. fantastic tutorial.......we have just got some glass blocks that I can practice on....... I especially like the use of wine ;)