Make a Reverse-Painted Tabletop
This decorative tabletop/wine bar calls for both technique and imagination. Learn how to make a tabletop with the reverse-painting technique.
Reverse painting is a technique in which the back side of glass is painted for viewing on the front side. This project employs the technique in the creation of a tabletop that nicely doubles as a wine bar.
Materials and Tools:
glass enamel paints
hand-painted collage paper
gold-leaf foil and adhesive
detail-drawing squeeze bottle with writing tip
- Wash the glass to remove any dirt, and dry thoroughly.
- Cut a piece of newsprint to exactly cover the tabletop glass. Fold the newsprint into equal squares, which will serve as a registering/scale-drawing guide.
- Draw the tabletop design onto the newsprint.
- Put the drawing under the clear glass tabletop to refer to as you reverse-paint.
- Paint the gold-leaf adhesive in desired areas first. The glue needs to dry overnight to a clear finish.
- Paint black border squares for the checkerboard edge of the tabletop.
- Cut out the collaged paper designs and draw or paint details on them.
- Cover the collage paper with decoupage medium on both sides in a very thin coat. Let dry.
- Using a squeeze bottle with a drawing tip, draw on desired black designs such as dots, squiggles and outlines for the grape clusters and the leaves. Let dry. Cover the whole top with a towel and blow-dry on high heat under the towel to set the lines. Dry for about 15 to 20 minutes to set and harden.
- Glue the paper cutouts into a desired arrangement on the tabletop.
- Paint desired black stripes on the background.
- Attach the gold-leaf foil onto the gold-leaf glue areas.
- Sponge over the black squares with green metallic paint for a border.
- Lightly brush on the four thin layers of color to the leaves and the grape clusters. When dry, cover with a dark background color.
- Following the paper design, fill in the rest of the background. Comb or sponge textures in a desired fashion and apply a background coat.
- When everything is completely dry, apply one to three coats of black glass enamel paint.
- Have a thin layer of clear acrylic sheeting cut to fit under the reverse tabletop.
- Adhere a mitered frame to hold the acrylic and the tabletop together.