Wouldn’t it be fun to give mom or grandma a homemade present for Mother’s Day – one that looks like it could be found in an art gallery but in fact could be done (at least in part) by a three-year-old? That’s how easy this project is. In fact, my two 3-year-old grandchildren made the tall vase pictured here – with help a little help from their aunt.

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For this project you’ll need:

  • Clean glass jar, vase, plate, candleholder, or anything glass. You can also use tiles to make coasters.
  • Adirondack Alcohol Ink
  • Protective cover for your work surface
  • Alcohol
  • Cotton Swabs


  1. Make sure your glass of choice is clean and free from oils.

  2. Starting with your first color, gently squeeze the color onto the glass. If it doesn’t drip all the way down, you can add some in the middle. There’s no wrong way to do this.

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  1. Continue adding complementary colors in the same manner. There’s really no controlling where the colors land, but don’t worry about making it perfect. You’ll be able to make a few adjustments in a minute. Perfection is overrated, anyway.

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  1. After you’ve got all of your colors dripped into place, you can lighten sections or erase them completely using rubbing alcohol on a Q-tip, or as my husband likes to call them, cotton-tipped applicators.

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  1. Once you’re happy with the way your project looks, let it dry. If you are working with young children, they will most likely want to add lots of color. I say go ahead, let them create. This isn’t an expensive project and grandma will be thrilled no matter how imperfect it may be.

  1. When your project has dried completely you’ll want to “seal” the color. For my project I used Mod Podge as the sealer. This makes the glass look a little duller but is still pretty. You could also use clear Polyurethane. It’s important to cover every area that has color on it. I missed some on the vase I made and the color ran a bit when I put water in it.

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Your project is done once the final layer of sealer is dry.

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You see, I told you it was easy. It’s important to remember that while you can do this project on any type of glass, you don’t want it to be in contact with food. One of the projects pictured here is a tea light holder but I found it got a little tacky feeling when I actually lit a candle in it. So, you might want to use one of those flameless tea lights instead of a real candle.

This project is finished so quickly that having several glass objects on hand might make it more fun for kids and eliminate their compulsion for overloading ONE vase with multiple colors. Have fun!