DIY Halloween Decor in Less than 1 Hour!
Happy October everyone! It’s Shalon here with a super quick and easy lighted glass block craft idea that is perfect for my favorite month! I just started a new job so unfortunately my crafting time has taken a hit 🙁 Thankfully, this project allowed me to create a fun new piece of DIY Halloween décor in less than an HOUR. Yes, you read that correctly, under 1 HOUR – and that includes all of the pictures I stopped to snap for you fine folks! This is a perfect craft for a beginner, or to satisfy your crafting itch if you’re short on time (like me!)
Here’s What You’ll Need:
- Decorative Glass Block – I used the Art Minds Decorative Glass Block from my local Michaels store that is 3.6 in. x 7.6x 3.06 in., which is perfect for this Graveyard vinyl design!
- Light Strand – I used the Heidi Swapp Marquee Love Light Strand (Note: The Heidi Swapp lights need 2 AAA batteries.) Christmas lights can also be used, just keep in mind the cord will stick out of the block and need to be close to an outlet!
- Silhouette Cameo, Cricut Explore, or other electronic cutting machine.
- Vinyl design – I chose the Spooky Graveyard Scene SVG Cut File design (requires Silhouette Studio Designer Edition, Cricut Design Space, or other cutting software that accepts SVGs.)
- Transfer paper or clear contact paper (I used transfer paper for this project).
- Permanent/Outdoor Adhesive Vinyl – I used Black Oracal 651 from Expressions Vinyl.
- Scraper (or credit card/old gift card, popsicle stick) for burnishing
- Weeding hook, X-acto knife, or other weeding tool
- Rubbing Alcohol (to clean surface)
- Heat Gun (or hair dryer) – optional
The following were also super helpful for me! 😉
- Rainy Day
- Napping Child
- Familiar TV in the Background
1. Measure Surface. Measure the inner flat surface of the glass block. My glass block had a beveled edge and I wanted the design to lie flat within the beveled frame. The inner measurements of this glass block were: 2.75 in. x 6.75 in. 2. Open Cut File in your Cutting Software. (I used Silhouette Designer Edition with my Silhouette Cameo, but this file is equal opportunity for all SVG enabled cutting machines!) I am using the Spooky Graveyard Scene SVG Cut File & Clipart design. This file includes 2 options: the top option has separated colors for layering, and the bottom is just the silhouette, which is perfect for lighted crafts like glass blocks and mason jars!.
Select and delete the top portion, leaving just the graveyard silhouette on the page. (You could also select and drag the other design elements off to the side if you are nervous about deleting them from your file).
3. Resize the Design to Fit your Glass Block. In Silhouette Studio, you can resize by opening the Scale Window, and adjusting the width/height to the desired dimensions. I recommend checking the Lock Aspect box to keep the proportions of the design in tact. Luckily, the dimensions for this design were already 2.751 in. x 5.934 in. which was perfect for the size of my glass block, so I left the size as is, and just moved the design to the upper left corner of the page to make the best use of my vinyl.
4. Load Vinyl into your Cutting Machine. The Cameo does not require a mat to cut vinyl, but you will need to move the roller to allow the machine to grab the vinyl. Then select “Load Media” on the machine’s front panel. You can of course, place your vinyl on a mat to cut. This would be necessary if you are using a smaller piece of scrap vinyl for this project.
5. Adjust Cut Settings. Once your vinyl is loaded, return to Silhouette Studio, open the Cut Settings window, select the design, and chose “Cut”. Under “Material Type”, double-click on Vinyl and adjust your cut settings.
For this project, I used the following settings: Blade 2, Speed 7, Thickness 5. Don’t forget to adjust the blade setting on your physical blade- not just onscreen! Depending on your machine, blade type etc, your settings may be different. Once your settings are chosen, click “Send to Silhouette”. This design cut beautifully!
Weeding & Decal Prep
6. Trim Vinyl. If you cut your vinyl straight off the sheet or roll, you’ll need to trim the design from the unused portion of vinyl. I used my Fiskars Trimmer to trim off the extra vinyl. You can skip this step if you used a pre-cut or scrap piece of vinyl.
7. Weed the Design. “Weeding” refers to the careful removal of the excess vinyl / negative space that is not part of the design.
Weeding Tips: Go slow. Start from a corner and peel the vinyl back onto itself and gently slide it back. Watch out for any parts that do not cleanly separate – often times a little poke with your hook, help from the Xacto Knife can help separate pieces.
I used a weeding hook to help peel back the larger vinyl sections and an Xacto Knife to poke out the smaller inner pieces.
8. Apply Transfer Tape to the Design. Cut a section of transfer tape large enough to cover the entire graveyard vinyl decal. Place the transfer tape carefully over the design and burnish (rub) with your scraper to completely adhere the transfer tape to the vinyl design.
9. Prepare Glass Block Surface. Peel off any labels from the glass block. I used a craft scraper and my nails to help remove the stubborn paper pieces. Any remaining glue residue can be removed with rubbing alcohol. You’ll need to clean the glass block with rubbing alcohol anyway so the vinyl has a clean surface to stick to. I cleaned both sides to make sure all the glue was gone and so it wouldn’t matter on what side I decided to place the decal.
Apply Vinyl Decal
10. Now we are ready to Apply the Vinyl Decal. To help with placement, I used my Fiskars Trimmer to cut off a little extra vinyl backing paper from the bottom of the decal so I could more evenly place the design on the block.
Peel the backing paper off the design, and hold only the transfer tape as you place the decal on the glass block.
Slowly begin to stick the bottom edge of the decal down, then slide your finger up the center of the design. I find this helps prevent air bubbles.
Slide your scraper tool across the design working from the center out (again, this helps with those pesky air bubbles!)
11, Burnish (Rub). Using your scraper tool and/or your fingers, rub back and forth over the design to transfer the vinyl from the transfer tape to the glass block and to push out any air bubbles.
12. Remove Transfer Tape. Once you feel confident that the vinyl has transferred to your glass surface, peel away the transfer tape. Fold a corner of the transfer tape back onto itself and slowly peel it off and away.
If you have any air bubbles that managed to sneak in, use a heat gun or a hair dryer to heat, and then burnish again to push them out.
My top cloud had a few air bubbles and I was able to remove them with a little heating action!
13. Add Lights! Remove the plastic cap on the side of the glass block, insert your lights, and Replace the cap. I love that Heidi Swap Lights are battery operated, so there is no cord coming out the side!
TA DA! Our easy lighted glass block is complete – and only halfway through my movie!
Variations: If you’re an experienced crafter, or have a little more time on your hands, try one of these variations for a different spin on this project!
- Create a “foggy” look with etching cream or frosted glass spray. To achieve this look, you would first etch or spray the glass block, let dry, and then add the vinyl as shown above.
- Use the vinyl as a stencil, and apply etching cream on the entire front. Wash away etching cream and remove vinyl leaving a clear graveyard design in the “fog.”
- Try purple, orange, or green colored lights for an extra eerie look!
Thank you for checking out this super fast and easy Halloween Lighted Glass Block tutorial! If you like it, go ahead and share on Pinterest or hit one of the Share buttons below!
Wishing you all a wonderful Halloween season and May Your Crafts Be Spooktackular!
And if you make one of these, don’t forget to post them on my Facebook page, or email them to me to show off your awesome glass block crafts!
Affiliate Disclosure: I may be an affiliate for some products recommended in this post. This means that if you purchase items through my links I will earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you. I only recommend products that I have personally used and enjoy and when you order through my link, it helps me continue to offer you lots of free SVG files, digital papers, scrapbook sketches, tutorials, and other freebies. Thank you in advance for your support!