Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Frosted Glass Door Project

Every home owner has a to-do list usually a mile long, but some of the items on this list are a lot lower priority.  For whatever reason, I decided to tackle a low priority project this weekend (mostly because the bigger ones involve outside and I am just better at being indoors in general!).  Every home in our neighboorhood has the same front door.  In theory, it is a very nice, functional, and welcoming front door with plenty of light:

But in actuality, this front door is absolutely non functional in its native state.  Literally you could see into my house from the street.  So to keep some semblance of privacy, the blinds are always down, and always closed.  That means it looks like this:

And honestly, both my husband and I aren't big fans.  Growing up I always thought it was so weird to pass a house on the street and see all the blinds pulled tight.  Like someone was hiding some dark, terrible secret inside.  Or at best just not very friendly (I had a big imagination).  And then I realized as an adult that when faced with a door like this you have only 2 choices: 1) let everyone see you walking around in your PJs or sports bra or various states of undress from the street 2) or shut the blinds tight.  That is until a 3rd choice appeared: turn my door windows into frosted glass!

Enter the solution: Gallery Glass.  You can purchase a bottle for $8.48 from Amazon with the possibility of free shipping with the required purchase amount.  Typically this is used for stain glass window projects so a variety of colors are available.  For your home windows Crystal Clear is probably best unless you are going all-out.  One bottle was more than enough for both doors.

Before I started I read two very informative blog posts: Simply Southern Charm and Lovely Crafty Home.  They both used clear Gallery Glass to create a faux-frosted glass door, but they used two different applications techniques.  I was torn on what type of pattern I should make in my application so I went with the zig zag application technique used on Lovely Crafty Home.  After it began drying I realized that all I could see were hundreds of zig zags and I had a momentary panic -- so I quickly reapplied in a circular motion as seen on Simply Southern Charm.  But the zig zag pattern had already dried a bit, so when I really examine my windows I still see zig zags which makes for a great privacy barrier but it's not so "frosted glass" looking.  My recommendation to you is to avoid zig zagging and stick to something that looks more natural/random so you don't get a ton of lines in your windows.  Really whatever pattern you make is going to be the pattern you see in the glass.  The one perk of the zig zag pattern is that you absolutely can't see through it from the street anymore.

What You Need: 
1 bottle Crystal Clear Gallery Glass
Disposable Gloves
Paper towel for cleaning up any drips

Step 1: Clean your window.  You don't want to lock in a bunch of dust.
Step 2: Liberally apply Gallery Glass; watch for drips!

Step 3: Rub it in.  Wearing gloves here helps since you are dealing with glue and are going to get very sticky hands if you use your bare hands.  Make sure you get it into the corners to avoid noticeable gaps!

Step 4: Optional patterning if you want a denser frosted appearance.  Drawing zig-zag lines will create a marked frosted appearance; larger circles will create a lighter effect.   I used a toothpick to make zig-zags as recommended by another blogger, but then went back and changed to circles because it felt too linear for my taste. Just remember the pattern you see in the glue is the pattern you'll get when it dries!

Step 5: Let Dry.  Now is a good time to change your pattern if you aren't liking how things look. Also this is the perfect time to second guess whether you made a horrible terrible mistake.

Step 6: More drying.  This is about 3 hours in.  I was very concerned at this point.  But remind yourself that this needs to dry overnight.

Step 7: The next day, take a deep breath and enjoy your new found privacy!  And remove those awful blinds from the door!

I have to admit I'm still getting used to the way this looks in my house.  There is so much more light coming in without the blinds pulled tight, but it also looks like there are rain streaks constantly on the door -- as if I'm living in a greenhouse.  The clarity that's coming through as the glue dries has made that much less of an issue, but even as things are clearing, I still feel completely comfortable that no one can see anything from the street.  And from the outside it looks just as much like true frosted glass as it does from the inside, even though I only had to apply the Gallery Glass on one side of the glass.

From the outside:

Overall this was an easy project, and if you have a window or door with privacy issues this is a much cheaper fix than buying blinds or a new door.  And it is soap and water wash off, so if you decide you're not happy, you can start over as long as you get to it fast enough.  In 7 days the glue cures so it will be significantly harder to remove; but that means you can clean your windows without having to worry about washing your Gallery Glass off!


  1. It looks great! I would have been second guessing my decision around step 5 as well :)

  2. Wow! That looks so easy to do, and it provides that frosted glass look for added appeal. And you can even add a few creative touches to it, if you feel like doing so. Thanks for sharing this with us! Good day!

    Doug Lowe @ M&M Glass

  3. Looks beautiful!, has anyone applied the product to both sides of the glass? I m just wondering if it also looks good and increases the privacy.