Reported by Dana Vitek
I first bought and used Delta Air-Dry PermEnamel paint nearly nine years ago while trying to come up with wedding favors. I didn’t wind up using the “hand-painted flowerpots” idea, because, oy, a painter I am not. But, I saved the paint. It was stashed in a plastic drawer for all these years.
Just recently, I went through a glass ornament phase… you know, the kind of phase that requires you to buy one billion empty glass bulbs on December 26th so that you can spend ALL YEAR preparing for the next holiday season craft fairs. Ahem. Is it June already? Anyway, my bulb-painting phase consisted of using alcohol inks, etc., and not paint, but for the purpose of this report, I sacrificed three out of my vast stash to try it out:
Not too shabby. I used a few different Delta Air-Dry PermEnamel products for these; the Azure Blue paint is thick and definitely opaque. The White Frost claims to give an “etched glass effect.” I don’t know about all that, but I will say that I liked the way it lined the inside of the ornaments and made the glass look thicker and not so fragile. And my new favorite shimmery paint: Shimmers in White Pearl. I think I’ll be incorporating this paint into this year’s ornaments (just as soon as I get started on them).
The folks at Delta recommend using their three-step process:
- Surface conditioner
Luckily, the bottles are all labeled Step 1, 2 or 3, in case you find yourself suddenly unable to read words. Normally, I’m all, “Bah! Surface Conditioner?! Who needs it?” Well, you need it, especially when painting on glass. Actually, it’s mostly isopropyl alcohol, so you could probably substitute that if you wanted to (don’t tell the Delta people I said so). Mostly you’re just looking to clean off smudgies, fingerprints, and oil from your hands.
Now, not everybody gets into glass crafts, but every paper crafter I know is nuts about plastic embellishments, especially those spendy ghost shapes or whatever. To me, anything that claims to work on glass really just means that you should be able to use it on non-porous materials, so I broke into my stash of plastic packaging pieces that I’ve been hoarding saving, to try it out.
I used a foam brush, and painted the backs of these stars (cut with Cuttlebug dies) with some of the regular PermEnamel (Classic Navy Blue), the White Frost, and the Shimmers. On a couple of the dark blue ones, I painted the fronts with the White Frost and the Shimmers to see what kind of effect I wound up with. Honestly, I wasn’t all that impressed with the White Frost by itself or over the blue (I didn’t think it looked etched, even after a prolonged stirring), but I was pretty happy with the Shimmers.
Here’s a card with my DesignerImposter embellishments:
(Stamp credits: PaperTrey Ink-Out on a Limb Extras, K&Company-Amy Butler Lotus Greeting Stamps; Ink: VersaMagic-Night Sky, Brilliance-Pearlescent Beige; Cardstock: PaperTrey Ink-Paper Basics Kraft; Accessories: Cuttlebug Star dies, plastic packaging, Scor-Pal.)
And a close-up of the stars of the show…
To be honest, it was a whole lot of effort for these embellishments, and this card took close to two hours from start to finish (and I don’t even love it!), but, the stars were as close to free as you can get.
- Price. The bottles I have from 9 years ago are marked $2.99. The bottles I picked up a month ago were, you guessed it, $2.99. This is the only product in America unaffected by inflation (well, that and McD’s double cheeseburgers, but that’s a different post.)
- According to Delta’s website, the paints are dishwasher, microwave and oven-safe (up to 350 degrees).
- Easy to use, and keep well, provided the caps are all the way closed when you put them in a drawer for nearly a decade. Duh.
- I didn’t love that it’s opaque, because I think if you’re painting on glass, you want the light to shine through. However, for painting on ceramics, I think it would be great. Delta does make a translucent glass paint that I’m going to try.
- The suggested drying/curing time is, get this- 10 days. HAHAHA… these people do not craft the way I craft. It dried to the touch in about 30 minutes though, so that’s closer to acceptable.
- All the bottles, including the glaze/sealant, are marked “Not for surfaces with food contact” so I guess I don’t understand why it’s such a coup to be oven & microwave safe if you can’t use them with food. I suppose you could paint the underside of dishes… that makes more sense.
- The bottles also come with the following warning: “This product contains a chemical known to the state of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm.” That sounds like some bad juju right there, so be careful with it; don’t go painting it on your skin or inhaling it.
You can find Delta Air-Dry PermEnamel at any craft store; I got mine at A.C. Moore. You can also find it at Joann’s and Amazon.
Do you use Delta’s Air-Dry PermEnamel for something cool? Leave us a comment, and show us your stuff!
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