How to Cut Glass for Crafts
Put on safety glasses and gloves before you start. Glass can easily break or shatter, so protect your hands and eyes from any stray shards. Use cut-resistant gloves meant for glass-cutting so you can still handle your pieces easily without hurting yourself. Make sure to always wear the safety glasses and gloves while you’re working.
You can buy cut-resistant gloves from hardware or craft supply stores.
Draw the shape you want to cut on your piece of glass. Use a fine-point marker to draw the line for your cut. If you want your line to be straight, use a ruler or another straightedge. Don’t draw the line too thick, or else the marker will be visible after you make your cut.
If you don’t want to draw directly on the glass, put a piece of paper with the shape you want to draw underneath the glass so you can trace it with the glass cutter.
Set the wheel of a glass cutter against the smooth side of the glass. Glass cutters have a notched end with a small scoring wheel on the tip. Make sure the piece of glass you’re cutting is on a flat surface so you can easily make your cut. Hold the glass cutter so your index and middle fingers are on top of it, and so the wheel points down. Press the wheel onto the glass where you plan on making your cut.
Look for glass cutters at craft supply stores or online.
If your glass is smooth on both sides, it doesn’t matter which side you make your cut on.
Drag the glass cutter along the line that you want to cut. Apply a small amount of pressure to the glass cutter so it etches into the surface of the glass. Pull the glass cutter toward you along the outline you drew to leave a score mark on the glass. Keep dragging the glass cutter until you reach the edge of the glass to complete your cut.
The glass cutter will only cut part way through the glass to make it easier to break. Don’t try to force the cutter completely through the glass, or else it may shatter or break in a different place.
Only make 1 cut at a time so it’s easier to break apart later on.
Tip: If you want the score to be perfectly straight, guide the glass cutter with a straightedge so the line isn’t crooked.
Flip the piece of glass over so the cut is face-down. Once you make a score line on one side of the glass, turn it over so the clean side is face-up. If you have trouble picking the piece of glass off of your table, slide an index card underneath it and pull the corner of the card up to get a better grip.
Grip the edge of the glass with a pair of pliers. Hold the pliers in your dominant hand and position them so they’re halfway along the length of your cut. Open the pliers and gently squeeze the handles together to grip the edge of the glass. Make sure the pliers don’t cover any part of your cut or else it won’t make a clean edge when you break it.
If you’re worried about the pliers scratching your piece of glass, wrap the ends with masking tape.