Jun 04, 2022 | Samuel Albert

How do you make a homemade beer glass?

If buying expensive beer glasses hurts your wallet badly, consider making them DIY to go light on your wallet. Not only can you make beer glasses for yourself, but also you can gift these to close friends and family. These are incredible gift options as you can customize and add a personal touch to them. You can either make them from scratch or get the basic beer glass and decorate it to suit your style.

PHOTO BY engin akyurt / UNSPLASH 

To make a homemade beer glass, 

  1. Cut the beer bottle or any other bottle at the curved neck and turn it into a beer glass.
  2. Construct a rugged wooden beer glass by aligning wood strips and attaching a metal handle to give it a rustic look.
  3. Shop for a basic beer glass and then decorate it to make a custom-made one. There are endless options - painting, etching, drawing, writing on it with chalkboard lettering, affixing designs, a beer brand name, adding glitter decoration, etc.

Even if you are not great at DIYing, you can create something that will suit your skill level, and you can end up making a unique, rare mug that you can be proud of. So, try your hand at handcrafting or hand decorating them. There is a niche for all of us - for a painter, a craftsman, a carpenter, a glassworker, or even a novice like me and you.

Let's start by probing a little further to find out which one will be easier for us to create while exploring all the other available options.

  1. How do you make a homemade beer glass?


The answer is simple. Repurposing a beer bottle. If you are a beer buff, you would have more than one bottle in hand (in case of any failed attempts).

But first, choose your beer bottle. I would prefer to choose a beer bottle with the brand name engraved or painted on it, so you don't need to double work by etching or drawing on them later. Plus, it gives you an authentic beery feel.

i) Using Acetone: A fundamental technique is to choose a spot where you want to cut the bottle and wrap a thread at that place several times around the bottle. Now, tie it off at the end. Remove the multi-layered thread and dip it in acetone. Put it back on the bottle at the same spot and light the thread with a lighter. Hold the bottle away from you, preferably over a sink.

    Wear safety gloves while trying this. The thread burns and cuts the bottle neatly. Now, smoothen the jagged bottle edges using sandpaper at a 45-degree angle.

    You can also use a sanding machine. If you are using one, wear a safety mask to cover your mouth and nose and wear protective eye gear to protect your eyes from the minute shards of glass.

    Spray a little silicon carbide on a work surface and sprinkle little water on it (as this chemical can irritate your eyes and nose). Start by smoothening the glass edges with a circular motion and finish it in a figure-eight pattern.

    Once the glass is smooth enough, wash it properly before pouring yourself a drink in it. You have officially now created your first DIY drinking glass/beer glass and deserve one.

    ii) Using Lighter Fluid: Like the previous method, dip the thread in the lighter fluid and start the fire while holding the bottle over a sink. When the flames die down, run it over with some cold water. Clink! You have made another beer glass.

      PHOTO BY Thomas Despeyroux / UNSPLASH 

      iii) The Candle Method: Another popular method to cut a bottle is to use a bottle cutter to neatly mark the score around the bottle. Once that is done, it is time for heat and cold treatment of the bottle.

      Light up a candle. Hold the bottle away from the direct heat, and rotate the bottle at the score. After a few seconds, run an ice cube using your fingers around the score of the bottle. The bottle cuts open clean.

      Some people use an ice bath. This can cause uneven edges at the score, or the bottle can even break. So, avoid it. You need a boatload of patience if you are a newbie to this process.

      PHOTO BY Paolo Nicolello / UNSPLASH  

      iv) Fireless Method: Mark the score around the bottle and hold your bottle near the sink. Heat up some water in a kettle. Pour hot water over the score mark. Alternate it with cold water from the sink. Repeat the process till the bottleneck cuts loose. 

        You can try the same with wine bottles, but historically they are a bit thicker than beer bottles, so cutting them may be more challenging.

        (Disclaimer: If you are a kid reading this, you must try this method under adult supervision only)

        1. What are the things needed to make a homemade beer glass?

        • A beer/wine bottle, of course!
        • Some thread, preferably yarn from your knitting supplies, as yarn soaks up the liquid well.
        • Lighter fluid (from your BBQ lighting kit) or acetone (a chemical found commonly in personal care products like nail polish remover).
        • Sandpaper for smoothening the edges.
        • A lighter for lighting up the fire.
        • A cold bath full of ice for safety purposes.
        • A plastic trough/paper/towel to cover the work surface.
        • Silicon carbide for polishing.

        PHOTO BY bluemorphos / PIXABAY 

        1. How to make your own wooden beer mug?

        You need some carpentry tools and skills to make your own wooden beer mug. Careful and detailed planning and precision in cutting the wood are indispensable. Remember to impeccably follow a specific plan while making the wooden mug.

        First, choose a wood that doesn't ooze out its flavor when soaked. Then, meticulously carve out a circular polygon and wood strips out of the wood. Crafting a wooden beer mug requires a lot of cutting, milling, chiseling, countless measuring and crosschecking measurements, gluing, and polishing.

        Once the basic mug is put together, cut two identical metal belts and drill holes in them uniformly. Rivet them for an authentic finish. Now, make a steel handle and fix it to the metal rings. Next, secure the wooden mug and push in the belt-and-handle assembly. Finally, securely attach the rings to the mug by nailing a few nails into the wood.

        Try adding a rugged look to your mug by opting for a wooden or a rope handle instead of a metal one.

        Time to enjoy your chilled beverage in your DIY wooden mug. Indeed, beer drinking can't get better than this!

        PHOTO BY Rachel Claire / PEXELS 

        1. How can you decorate your beer glasses?

        The sky is the limit when it comes to decorating your beer glasses.

        i) Glitter them up: If you like to play around with glitter, you can choose to use a single favorite color or go for a dual-color combo. Mix up the colors if you know which mixed colors work great in glitter.

          You will need a pair of scissors, painter's tape, glitter, mod podge, a foam brush for applying mod podge, rubbing alcohol, and some cotton for cleaning.

          Tape the glass's lip and upper portion of the glass with the painter's tape (You definitely don't want your glitter here!) Rub the rest of the glass clean with rubbing alcohol for a better finish.

          Choose your mod podge. If you are putting your glass in the dishwasher, use the dishwasher-safe one. Otherwise, go for the regular one.

          Using the foam brush, apply mod podge generously. Sprinkle the glitter. Rest it for a couple of hours, then apply the second coat of mod podge and respray glitter. Rest it for two hours. Apply the final coat of mod podge and the glitter coat. Set aside for a month before using it.

          PHOTO BY Michelle Riach / PEXELS 

          Picture suggestion: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A0ze1IqKOz0

          ii) Adding Designs and Quotes: Select a cool phrase or season's greetings or wishes for a special occasion to add a personal touch and essence to your glass. Then, complete it with rich glitter decoration.

            To do that:

            1. Start off by picking a style of font you love and putting together your phrase.
            2. Then, choose the shape elements - bubbles, hearts, stars, sparkles, snowflakes, moon, or other shapes.
            3. Use the mirrored version of letters, so the words read right from inside the glass.
            4. Print out your designs in holographic golden or silver vinyl.
            5. Clean the glass with rubbing alcohol.
            6. Carefully transfer them to the glass with a transfer sheet. Ensure your letters read right from inside.
            7. To eliminate creases caused due to roundedness of the glass, start affixing the transfer sheet from the middle and work your way to the sides.
            8. Time to spray paint the glass with a base color. Finish with a matte, satin, or glossy finish spray coat.
            9. Sprinkle glitter over the glass and then cover it with resin.

            PHOTO BY Republica / PIXABAY 

            You can take pics from this video:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dyPdu3VYxo

            Suppose you would like to try with two colors - one on the outside and another on the inside. You can stick your stickers first, then paint with mod podge, spray first glitter color, seal with mod podge, then sprinkle the second glitter color and again seal with mod podge.

            If you put quotes on the outside, fix the phrases using a transfer sheet. (Tip: Cut the sides of the transfer sheet so the vinyl holograms sit perfectly on the glass.) Then, finish it off with a smooth resin finish.

            iii) Mark It With Chalkboard: Do you find the above methods tricky? Or do you think you are not crafty?

              You can resort to the liquid chalkboard marker method. First, write your quote or draw your picture on plain paper. (You can ask your artist friend to help with the freehand drawing.) Next, tape it firmly inside the beer glass or mug so it doesn't move. Now use the chalkboard marker pen to write the lettering on the outside. Once it is done, remove the tape and the paper. This one has a more personal touch and appeal to it. 

              iv) Beer Glass For Decor:

              Decoupage: Try the decoupage method if you aren't going to drink from your beer glass but want to keep it in your display. Print some beautiful decoupage designs using mod podge on your glasses.

                Chalk paint: Use chalk paint to paint your beer glass - satin or matte. Apply several light coats instead of a few heavy coats of the paint. Use a beer glass that has self-lettering or dimples. After drying them up, use sandpaper for sanding them, so the letters and designs show. Paint them with a waxy or glossy finish. Use either ribbons or a jute rope to tie a bow and put it on display. 

                  1. How to etch your beer glass?

                  Get a basic beer glass from the dollar store. Choose your letters and create your stencil. Ensure your stencil has ample space around the letters, so the etching cream doesn't run over.

                  Clean the glass thoroughly with rubbing alcohol and transfer the stenciled words onto the glass surface using a transfer sheet. Use a weeding tool for help. While sticking the transfer sheet, paste the center of the sheet first and smoothen out the sides to avoid creases. Try to remove any wrinkles or bubbles the best you can and aim for a cleaner, smooth finish. 

                  Get your etching cream from any craft supply store. Wear safety gloves and eyeglasses while handling the etching cream to avoid any skin contact with the cream as it can burn your skin. 

                  Apply the etching cream liberally on the exposed glass portion in the stencil but be careful that it doesn't overflow and cross the stencil border. Leave it on for about 10-15 minutes. 

                  After the required time,

                  1. Wash the etching cream off and remove the vinyl sheet.
                  2. Use the help of a weeding tool to eliminate specks and spots.
                  3. Wash your glass.

                  Your beautifully etched beer glass is ready for pouring in your favorite chilled beer.

                  Handmade and self-decorated beer mugs add a nice touch to your home decor. It definitely is something you can be proud of making on your own. Creating it adds a personal touch to it. The minor manufacturing flaws are forgivable and make it unique and rare. And when we make something, we leave a part of us with it. So, go ahead and display them in your living room or gift wrap them and send it to near and dear ones who will cherish and keep them.

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